Magpie

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Pub Date 2 Sep 2021 | Archive Date 31 Mar 2022
4th Estate, Fourth Estate

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Description

The exhilarating new novel from the bestselling author of The Party: a thrilling, stylish and psychologically astute story of jealousy, motherhood and power.

'Completely, terrifyingly BRILLIANT’ MARIAN KEYES 

'A book that needed to exist in the world. It is the book that was missing’ LISA TADDEO

‘Clever and suspenseful … A compelling, twisting read’ MATT HAIG, AUTHOR OF THE MIDNIGHT LIBRARY

In Jake, Marisa has found everything she’s ever wanted. Then their new lodger Kate arrives.

Something about Kate isn’t right. Is it the way she looks at Marisa’s boyfriend? Sits too close on the sofa? Constantly asks about the baby they are trying for? Or is it all just in Marisa’s head?

After all, that’s what her Jake keeps telling her. And she trusts him - doesn’t she?

But Marisa knows something is wrong. That the woman sleeping in their house will stop at nothing to get what she wants.

Marisa just doesn’t know why.

How far will she go to find the answer – and how much is she willing to lose?


The exhilarating new novel from the bestselling author of The Party: a thrilling, stylish and psychologically astute story of jealousy, motherhood and power.

'Completely, terrifyingly...


Advance Praise

‘A dark, sleek, ever-tightening spiral … Completely, terrifyingly BRILLIANT’ MARIAN KEYES, AUTHOR OF GROWN UPS

‘Elizabeth Day has written that rare book I always go hunting for, something that will keep me breathless with suspense but also buoyant with good energy. It is both sinister and comforting, outrageous but grounded, with a head-spinning plot twist… Magpie is a book that needed to exist in the world. It is the book that was missing’ LISA TADDEO, AUTHOR OF THREE WOMEN AND ANIMAL

‘Superbly taut and well-written, noirish with a big and beating heart’ JESSIE BURTON, AUTHOR OF THE MINIATURIST AND THE CONFESSION

‘Clever and suspenseful with a brilliant central pivot and a keen eye for relationships, including the toxic ones. A compelling, twisting read’ MATT HAIG, AUTHOR OF THE MIDNIGHT LIBRARY

‘An absorbing exploration of infertility and mental illness combined with the pace and plot of a heart-racing thriller … I literally couldn’t put this down. Sublime’ SARA COLLINS, AUTHOR OF THE CONFESSIONS OF FRANNIE LANGTON

‘The most mind-blowing book of the year’ JOANNA CANNON, AUTHOR OF THE TROUBLE WITH GOATS AND SHEEP 

‘Magpie is tightly plotted, crackling with an uneasy tension, and has an ingenious twist you won’t see coming. Stylish, sinister, and clever, this is a sublime thriller’ LOUISE O’NEILL, AUTHOR OF AFTER THE SILENCE

‘Magnificent. Clever, beautifully-crafted, gripping, warm: I read it one sitting’ KATE MOSSE, AUTHOR OF THE CITY OF TEARS

‘Deft, thrilling, and merciless, Magpie is a book I raced through trying to guess the next twist and turn of the tightly woven plot Elizabeth has crafted. I couldn't turn the pages fast enough’ LAURA JANE WILLIAMS, AUTHOR OF THE LUCKY ESCAPE AND OUR STOP

'Clever and absorbing with cracking plot twists and lots of spot on social commentary, I could not stop until I had eaten it all’ CATHY RENTZENBRINK, AUTHOR OF A MANUAL FOR HEARTACHE AND EVERYONE IS STILL ALIVE

'I raced through Magpie. A very elegant, tense, literary thriller full of misdirection, unreliable witnesses, motherhood, madness, rage, and the most heart-breaking account of infertility I've read' SARAH VAUGHAN, AUTHOR OF ANATOMY OF A SCANDAL AND LITTLE DISASTERS

‘A dark, sleek, ever-tightening spiral … Completely, terrifyingly BRILLIANT’ MARIAN KEYES, AUTHOR OF GROWN UPS

‘Elizabeth Day has written that rare book I always go hunting for, something that will...


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ISBN 9780008374969
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Average rating from 222 members


Featured Reviews

I really enjoyed this book, a great page Turner but filled with profound commentary on fertility, relationship pressures and how we compare ourselves to other women. The twist is fantastic and you do not see it coming! Must read.

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Magpie is a gripping and twisty thriller and a masterclass in misdirection! When I saw that Elizabeth Day would be releasing a new novel this year, I was excited to read it having loved her previous fiction books. As soon as I received the digital arc, I started Magpie straightaway and was not disappointed! I am reluctant to include too many plot details in this review as it can spoil a reader’s enjoyment of the story especially when the book is a sublime thriller like this so I will try not to include any spoilers. Magpie is told using a limited third person point of view which switches at a key point in the novel. Tension builds subtly from the start; the first part is fast paced and weaves in the family history of one of the female protagonists, Marisa, whilst being set in the present. As with any great psychological thriller, I felt an instant sense of unease and my initial predictions were thrown off course by the plot twist that I absolutely did not see coming and even after this twist I was unsure of where the story would end up. The story is superbly plotted and structured leaving you guessing right up to the climactic event towards the end of the story. Magpie is a thoroughly readable, gripping psychological thriller. It’s main theme centres around motherhood and infertility and this is handled so well by Day. In some ways I was reminded of recent thriller Greenwich Park and The House Guest but for me, Elizabeth Day’s writing marks this out one of the best thrillers I’ve read so far this year.

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Wow. Wow. Wow. OK, I've nearly calmed down. This is astonishingly absolutely fantastic. A plot with three main characters and their home life adjusting to having a baby. The twist when it comes winds you like a basketball to the stomach and you doubt everything you've just read. Clever writing and it keeps you guessing. A perfect blend of characters to love to hate, love and really want to squeeze. Sinister, sneaky and shocking.

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Couldn’t put this down until I finished it. The story unfolds so beautifully that you don’t see the twists coming which is very satisfying. The twists and turns then keep you page turning right until the end. Just when I thought I could see how it would all turn out, it surprised me again. Very enjoyable read.

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Another unputdownable book by Elizabeth Day I tore through her first book the Party and did the same with the Magpie.I was drawn right in by the characters the story line the plot twists.Will be recommending a really good read.#netgalley #4thestate

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Great new book from Elizabeth Day. This has a superb plot and I loved the twist. I could feel the anguish over the infertility, the writing here was excellent. Sure to be a hit.

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Marisa is looking for love when she meets Jake. He suggests she move in with him after three months and that they start trying for a baby. She becomes pregnant quickly but she soon starts to doubt everything around her and Jake. The story is initially told from Marisa’s point of view and then switches to another narrator. Once this happened I was completely sucked into the story and could not put it down - I finished it within the day. Magpie deals with toxic family relationships, sexual assault, mental health issues and fertility concerns in a compelling and authentic way. It is full of twists and I found myself constantly on edge whilst reading it. The narrative, however, never fully returns to Marisa’s point of view which I think I would have liked for completeness. This is a compelling page-turner with unexpected twists that I raced to finish. Thank you to Netgalley and 4th Estate for the ARC in return for an honest review.

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Elizabeth Day’s latest novel, ‘Magpie’ is a compelling exploration of family relationships, of rejection, of fear, and of desire. Marisa and her partner want a baby very much. Kate and her partner want a baby very much. To what lengths will these confident, successful people go to ensure that this happens? The structure of this story encourages the reader to understand that nothing can be taken at face value other than the key characters’ strength of feelings. As the sophisticated grandmother to be, Annabelle, reminds Kate on several occasions, nothing is more important than family. But what exactly does that mean? Families come in all different shapes and sizes and some of these are more wishful-thinking than reality. Even to focus on the central theme of ‘Magpie’ would be to spoil the ways in which Day gradually allows the reader to appreciate what is playing out over the course of the novel. Nevertheless, the singular title reminds us that ‘sorrow’ is ever-present. This is an intelligent, sensitive and thought-provoking discussion of motherhood, trauma and societal expectations. Highly recommended. My thanks to NetGalley and Fourth Estate for a copy of this novel in exchange for a fair review.

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I really enjoyed this new novel by Elizabeth Day and thought the plot twist in the middle of the book was pure genius. This book felt like a thriller in some instances, but it was not scary, just a really good page-turner. It was interesting to see how the author took inspiration from her own fertility journey to explore themes such as wanting to have a baby and not being able to conceive, the pressure it can have on a relationship, and comparison between women. I also loved the symbolism of the magpie and how it kept coming back in the story. I’d say the only downfall for me was that the denouement was a bit ‘too good to be true’ considering everything that happened beforehand.

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Elizabeth Day can do no wrong in my eyes, I am a super fan. However saying that this book was spectacular, I loved the twist in the middle and did not see it coming. Highly recommend!

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Marisa has found the perfect boyfriend, and has moved in with him into their perfect home. When his business takes a downturn and a lodger moves in, things seem a bit amiss. A complex tale of relationship undercurrents which kept me absorbed until the end.

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OMG! If I could give this ten stars, I would. I have always loved Elizabeth Day's writing but she has certainly surpassed herself with 'Magpie.' The writing is sublime, the plot is claustrophobic, the structure breathtaking, and the characters so believable and emotionally drawn that I felt as if they were people I knew and were living with me for two days while I ripped through this book. The book deals with difficult themes and on the first night of reading this, I was alone in the house, terrified but the narrative was so compulsive, so addictive that I could not stop reading. This book is written with such depth and clarity and foresight; it lingered In my mind and is still there, hours after finishing it. I'm not going to do a traditional review where I tell you about the story and outline the plot. Trust me when I say, you HAVE to read this. Kick off your shoes, make a pot of coffee and devour it. I can guarantee, you'll still be there compulsively turning the pages as the light outside fades and another dawn breaks. This is a masterclass in thriller writing, characterisation, plot and misdirection. Loved it! Congratulations Elizabeth. Truly outstanding. I cannot recommend this enough. Definitely Elizabeth's best yet. Thank you to the author, the publisher and NetGalley for my review copy.

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Marisa seems to have it made. Despite experiencing various trauma in her earlier life, she now seems to have found, in Jake, her perfect man. She has an enjoyable and fulfilling job, writing and illustrating specially personalised fairy stories for children. They have a nice house. All she wants now is a baby. One day, a lone magpie flies into the house. Is this unwanted interloper a bad omen? Does Marisa have cause to be worried about Jake's interfering mother? Or about her attractive female lodger? Is everything as it appears to be? Elizabeth Day's new novel is a page-turner which will keep you guessing throughout.

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I was completely gripped by this skilfully written page turner. I literally couldn’t put it down and read it one lazy Saturday in a single sitting! The plot twists were superb and there were times when I had no idea what was real. Highly recommended.

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Do not miss this book. An amazing read. It has so many twists and turns that will knock you for six, The main characters are all really well written and the plot is fantastic. An excellent read

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I loved this book. So many twists and turns that I didn't see coming. The characters were so well written and developed and I could just picture them all so clearly. Totally engrossing and I read it far too quickly even though I did not want it to end!

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Wow. I thought Elizabeth Day might not be able to top 'The Party' or 'Paradise City' but she continues to publish at the peak of her powers. Using (presumably) her own experience of infertility and IVF, Day channels this very personal story through the lens of Marisa, Kate and Jake. Blonde, curvy Marisa thinks she has the perfect life - newly decorated home, creative job illustrating bespoke children's books, and a perfect partner in Jake. Dark-haired, skinny Kate seems like the cuckoo in the nest - but is she? With nods to 'Rebecca' (a book that comes up at least once) the power struggle between women, including Jake's monstrous middle-class mother Annabelle, makes for compelling reading. Skillfully written and just as judiciously edited, Magpie will be another feather in this author's cap.

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I wasn't expecting to enjoy this novel so much but I loved it! I was really liking the writing style and engaging with the writing characters, and then I saw the plot twist coming and was disappointed as two of the last four thrillers I have read have employed this same trope (I won't say what, as I try to post reviews without spoilers). HOWEVER. The author spun that twist so fast I was reeling. And I LOVE when a book surprises me. After that it was one snaky road all the way to the end, with twists and turns aplenty. What differentiated this from just being another decent thriller for me was not just the quality of the writing, but also the attention to character development - every character was complex, flawed, and beautifully realised, so that I felt like I'd met real people along the way. I've read Elizabeth Day's non-fiction books before, and am thrilled that her fiction equally brilliant. I will be eagerly awaiting the next novel! An easy five stars from me. Thank you to NetGalley and to the publisher, who granted me a free ARC copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Genre: Womens Fiction | General Fiction | Thriller Release Date: Expected 2nd September 2021 TW: Pregnancy, Fertility Issues, Mentions of serious illness and sexual assault. Marisa and Jake are the perfect couple and they're very much in love. Even though she hasn't known him for very long, Marisa has never been more sure of anything before and she can't wait for her own Happy Ever After now they're moving in together and starting a family. But when they decide to take in a lodger, Kate - things get weird. At first it just seemed like she had a polite interest in them, but soon her interest in Jake especially shifts into something uncomfortable and concerning. Kate is slowly becoming obsessed with Marisa's boyfriend and her unborn child but Jake doesn't seem to think Kate is doing anything wrong at all. Either she's losing her mind or something very bad is happening right in her own home. Marisa has everything she's ever dreamed of - and now she needs answers no matter the cost. Magpie is a tense, twisty tale about jealousy and envy, and the terrifying reality of getting everything you've ever wanted. This was definitely one of those stories that always has something sinister lurking around the corner every time you think you know what's happening. Somewhere between an authentic domestc drama and a thriller, this was oddly and uncomfortably gripping. Delving into Marisa's troubling past, the things she's been dealt over the course of her life we can slowly understand the different peices of her life and build a picture of how she became who she is today. We mostly hear the tale from Marisa's point of view, and I could feel the scathing jealousy and insecurity in her voice. She was somehow so unlikeable and totally relatable all at once. Elizabeth Day is a master of misdirection and this is one to watch. RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Thank you to Elizabeth Day, Fourth Estate and Netgalley for this ARC in return for an honest review.

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Magpie is a book that I really cannot recommend highly enough. It is also quite difficult to review without giving away the twist that comes about a third of the way through, and completely surprised me. Marisa and Jake are in a relationship, and when he suggests they move in together and start a family, she is in complete agreement. Jake then announces his finances have taken a hit so suggests they get a lodger to help out, and Marisa reluctantly agrees. Kate soon has her feet under the table and Marisa realises something isn’t quite right, ending in a terrifying confrontation. Elizabeth Day is possibly best known for her podcast and subsequent books ‘How to fail’, but she is foremost a talented writer of fiction that has engaging, sometimes flawed characters and intriguing storylines. Her novels appeal to a wide range of people who can all find something to relate to within them. I think I actually gasped out loud at one point while reading Magpie and felt such hatred towards Jake’s mother Annabel. Only a truly accomplished writer can create reactions like that.

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So I read this far too quickly and gutted it’s over. Magpie by Elizabeth Day is the definition of a page turner. There’s twists that I didn’t see coming, and the pace throughout had me staying up late and setting early alarms to read more. 5⭐️ read for me and look forward to hearing what other readers think of it too! Magpie is out on 2 September and available to pre-order now. Big thanks to @4thestatebooks for the early copy on Netgalley 🤗

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Really enjoyed reading this book, enjoyed all the twists and turns and all the mystery involved in the story. Love to read more form the author.

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Marisa may have only known Jake a few months, but she has never felt this certain about anyone. When he asks her to move in with him and they start trying for a baby, she knows she has finally found the steadfast love and support she has been looking for all her life. But their relationship is tested when they take in a lodger, Kate, who has little regard for personal boundaries and seems to take an uncomfortable interest in Jake – as well as the baby they are hoping to have. Why is Kate so obsessed with the couple? And, more worryingly, why doesn’t Jake share Marisa's concern? In her determination to find the answers, Marisa risks losing everything she holds dear. Magpie deals with toxic family relationships, sexual assault, mental health issues and fertility concerns in a compelling and authentic way. It is full of twists and I found myself constantly on edge whilst reading it. This is a first for me by the author and one I enjoyed and would read more of their work. The book cover is eye-catching and appealing and would spark my interest if in a bookshop. Thank you very much to the author, publisher and Netgalley for this ARC.

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I chose this book because of the synopsis. I later discovered that the author was the same Elizabeth Day who wrote Failosophy – a book I really enjoyed. I had no idea that she wrote fiction as well, but was pleasantly surprised with Magpie. It started well, with a happy (albeit fast-moving) relationship between Marisa and Jake. I’m immediately suspicious about short-term relationships where one partner is pushing the other to move in together and have a baby. It seems quite common in thrillers, so my radar went up quickly and, sure enough, things started to take an unpleasant turn. However, the twist isn’t what you expect! Once Kate moved in I started to figure it out and had guessed just before it was revealed. However, I liked that you found out halfway through and then see the other perspective of the story. This made it much more engaging; I hate books where the author builds the story unnecessarily and the twist is rushed and disappointing. Thankfully, Magpie was not a traditional thriller. What did surprise me was the way it plays out and tricks you into thinking you’ve figured it all out. There are so many twists after the ‘big reveal’ that it’s never clear how it’s going to end. I was still a little bit disappointed with the ending, but the rest of the book is so well-paced and well-written that it’s still an excellent story. Not one character in this book is likeable… Marisa is shallow and comes across as very spoilt; Jake seems understanding, but at times crosses a line. Even though I felt most sympathy for Kate and her backstory, she still wasn’t a nice person. Other characters provide good depth to the story, and each of them has their reasons for acting the way they do, but I struggled to forgive them. I love reading books set in places I’ve lived, but so many authors write about London and make multiple errors about the city. It made a nice change to read a book about London by someone who has actually been there! Overall, this was a gripping and surprising thriller, that tugs on the heartstrings in very unexpected ways!

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I really loved this gripping novel although the ornithological imagery that came to me throughout was the cuckoo in the nest rather than a magpie. It’s hard to say much about it without giving the central point of the plot away but, as with Day’s previous novels, it’s a real page-turner that I read in three long nights. Clever, empathetic and extremely clear-eyed on the impact of pursuing motherhood at almost any cost, I really enjoyed this novel and highly recommend. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC.

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I thought this book was an interesting read. It is quite hard to describe without giving the plot away, as there is a major plot twist half way through, which I thought was great as it really pulls the rug away and you know why. I think it is good at describing the issue it raises and was interesting in its set up.

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I enjoyed this very clever book. The twists are great, and the characters believable. It's a real page-turner. My only disappointment was with the slightly sugary ending, but I would thoroughly recommend this book.

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Amazing twists these are a real game changer but that's what good thrillers need so I'm guessing you won't be disappointed. Marisa falls in love and is asked to move in with Jake, so she does and then they have a lodger Kat. This changes things big time, she is into everything and Marsia isn't impressed and doesn't seem to be bothered. And when she gets pregnant why does Kate seem to be so involved what's her story. Jakes Mum Annabelle is an interesting character that has a bite to her but she can surprise. Heros and villains who can tell some things can mess with your minds and Elizabeth Day can mess with your mind. This is a great thriller that you may think you have it sorted but you won't, be warned you will be kept on your toes the twists are expertly spectacular I never saw them coming. This is a 5star read and I think you will need to find a good argument to disagree and I'm thinking it would be wrong in my view that is.

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I’ve never read a book with a storyline like this one before and it definitely had me hooked from the very beginning. I loved the twist in the story and definitely didn’t see it coming! A great read!

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Despite being a big fan of Elizabeth Day's podcast and non-fiction writing, this was my first time picking up on of her works of fiction. I wasn't really sure what to expect, but powered through this book in a couple of days, as her characters and their presentation had me hooked from the very beginning! Marisa and Jake are blissfully happy. They move a lodger in to their new home to help with some financial difficulties but all is not what it seems and things soon lose their shine as Marisa becomes suspicious of Kate, the glamourous and fashionable woman that is now living in her home. I was so drawn in by these characters, particularly Marisa, and I really found myself rooting for her in the first section of the book, which is truly a credit to Day's writing. As she moves through her life, basking in her new relationship and planning for her future, Marisa comes across as a confident and happy woman with plans that she knows are right for her. Then we see the arrival of Kate, and who hasn't had a nightmarish, annoying housemate? You feel for Marisa and find yourself sympathising with her as she begins to suspect that there is more to Kate than meets the eye. I couldn't put it down, staying up late and being sleepy for my morning meets because I was so determined to find out what has happening and how things would turn out. The book deals with a range of issues, including mental health, fertility, sexual assault and childhood trauma in a perceptive and delicate way, shining a lot on these issues without trivialising them and highlighting the lasting impact that these moments have on a person's life. In dealing with these issues and presenting the characters in such a vivid way, the first two sections of this book were FANTASTIC. I genuinely twisted and turned with the characters and was desperate for the next chapter and the next big event. I have to be honest and say that I was expecting more from the ending, as I was convinced that a further reveal or twist was going to come out of the woodwork. In some places and for some characters, I found things a bit rushed, although I was happy to find everything resolved so neatly at the end (even though some of the resolutions were not what I expected!) Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book and it was worth the late nights and sleepy meetings. The characters were convincing, the plot was shocking but at the same time believable and contained many moments that we have all experienced, understand or fear happening to ourselves. I will be going back to read Elizabeth Day's other works of fictions after this, and can happily say I am now an all round fan of all of her work. Thanks to Netgalley and 4th Estate for the ARC in return for an honest review.

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Oh, what a rollercoaster this was! What a page-turner! I enjoyed this a lot. I got a bit frustrated by the first 'twist' because I thought it was predicable and that I knew where the whole story would go from there. But then, boom! In came another twist, the second one far more surprising. And then a third! I loved the whole scene at Annabelle's toward the end (side note: it felt like a movie!) My only criticism of this novel was that I didn't particularly like the ending - I would have much preferred 'the opposite version' of what happened to have happened. All said though, this was a very entertaining and engaging read.

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Dear Elizabeth Day Please write more books! I didn’t think you could better The Party but this is even more brilliant. Absolutely loved it and will be telling everyone to buy it. A massive 5/5. Best book of the year so far.

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A thriller that shows the dangerous side a yearning for motherhood can take. The protagonist are all complex and the story of a couple and their out of control tenant had me enthralled!

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I have been a fan of Elizabeth Day’s podcasts and newspaper columns for a while, so when the chance came up to review one of her novels, I was immediately onboard. This novel revolves around a young couple who are adjusting to having their life ruled by their fervent wish to conceive, and by the reluctant admittance of another adult into their home. Marisa and Jake are the outwardly happy albeit financially struggling couple, and Kate is the enigmatic woman they take in as a lodger to help them out of their financial tight spot. But will Jake turn out to be the man that Marisa thought she knew so well? And what secrets might Kate be keeping? Along the journey of Marisa’s discoveries, this novel also deals with a range of hard-hitting issues such as mental health, fertility issues and childhood trauma in a sensitive way that understands us to grasp the protagonists’ complexities in much more detail. A wonderful read – warmly recommended! I would like to thank the publishers 4th Estate as well as NetGalley for the free ARC that I was provided with in return for this honest and unbiased review.

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I received an advanced reader’s copy in exchange for an honest review I loved this one. Very fast paced, had me turning pages as I tore through it – I had to see how it would end. The characters were well rounded and the narrative felt believable. Gave me chills. Solid five

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4+ ‘One for sorrow, two for joy ..’ Marissa is viewing a house for her and boyfriend Jake to live in when a magpie flies in through the open doors. A harbinger? Only time will tell. They move in and for financial reasons take in Kate as a lodger and she becomes a firmly affixed limpet on the hull of their relationship. This is a such a clever book which is very well written and is perfectly paced throughout. It has some good twists that take you totally by surprise as they come out of the blue but which enable you to make sense of some observed disconnection and frissons of unease in the narrative. In places it’s creepy, tense and claustrophobic in the smothering overstepping of bounds and it becomes quite scary. This leads to a growing antipathy between the three of them which escalates. The characterisation is the standout feature of the book and I’d go so far as to say it’s outstanding. Marissa is a cauldron of various emotions from anger to insecurity and everything in between. She hides things and prefers to paper over the cavernous cracks in her personal life. Kate seems a controlling , manipulative cuckoo in the nest but as the storyline develops it’s clear she’s carrying a huge burden. The prize for ultimate manipulation goes to Jake’s mother, whose passive aggressive barking and biting is fist clenchingly odious. The novel deals with some weighty issues from mental health to fertility problems to trauma of various kinds and all are dealt with sensitively by the author. My only reservation after such a compelling, hard to put down read is the resolution which seems a bit too picture perfect. What unfolds between the three of them is messy and maybe as a consequence it needs a messy end. Overall, this is a very polished, clever, domestic noir/psychological thriller from the talented Elizabeth Day. If you like a read with twists and a multitude of emotions you may enjoy this one! With thanks for NetGalley and 4th Estate for the arc in return for an honest review.

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Disclaimer - I LOVE Elizabeth Day. I have read all the novels she has written - and I have been longing for a new novel since The Party 4 years ago. I was not disappointed - although I am furious with myself for gobbling this one up and not savouring as I might have a long wait to the next! As others have said there are twists through this book that would be major spoilers so I can only say so much. A young couple are desperate to have a baby - but is their new lodger all that she seems? Utterly compelling from start to finish - I read this in pretty much 24 hours, despite my promises to myself not to rush it! Very commercial, very readable - tacking mental illness, motherhood, infertility, relationships, dysfunctional families and more. I know so much of this somes from the authors own experiences, and I truly commend her for putting this to paper in fiction, as it is really powerful. Great stuff!

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A clever and original plot, especially the twist partway thru. The long passages about Infertility and IVF are either not necessary or in the wrong part of the novel. The plot was moving along nicely then suddenly slows to a crawl. The ending is a bit unlikely but it seems these days an ending must be happy. The title is based on the appearance of a magpie a various point but all along I thought Cuckoo was more appropriate. This novel didn't go as I expected from the blurb, with the twist partway through changing the book quite a lot and bringing a suddenly quite different perspective on having children and a different narrative. Some people might expect it as the start of the book is quite weird, with what felt like a lot of information dumped at once, but that makes more sense as a choice looking back on it now I've finished the book, even if at the time I found it a bit boring to hear all the detail about how Marisa and Jake met. I didn't expect the twist until it got very close, however, so I did find the moment of revelation quite effective.

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I loved this book!! I read it in one afternoon as I just couldn’t put it down. I did find that I guessed a couple of the twists, but it certainly didn’t take away from how gripping the book was. Is definitely recommend!

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Loved this novel and finding it very hard to write a review without giving away the plot! There is a twist halfway through that I didn't see coming!! It's essentially about fertility, relationship, possession and families. The story is told through the eye of three main characters who all share a house together and one of them is pregnant. That's all I'm going to say about this page turner

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WOW! I haven't been hooked on a story this quickly in such a long time. I started reading it on a Sunday night and had to literally drag myself to bed. I just wanted to keep reading! I was hooked before I even got to the plot twist. This story felt incredibly like a make-sure-the-door-is-locked thriller at parts, but it's actually just a very good page-turner. I really enjoyed the fertility journey, especially the comparison and the jealously between women. It's not something that's always expressed. The reason that I gave this story 4 stars was because everything seemed to just... go so well at the end. Considering the journey, I thought it was a little too happily ever after, and perhaps I was expecting a final shock of some kind. However, I really loved this book! I have already recommended it to several people. Thank you for the chance to review this - Goodreads, amazon and blog post coming soon!

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With moments of brilliant writing Elizabeth Day allows her four main characters to spotlight human frailties and, emotions, but especially love and motherhood. Perhaps the book could be shorter but by the dramatic end it doesn't matter in the slightest. Prepare to be moved.

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I really enjoyed this. It had all the twists and turns of a psychological thriller entwined with real issues around motherhood, family and mental health. It was clever, but not gimmicky, and the characters were believable and well established. A really great read.

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