On my blog today, I’m sharing my thoughts on the new novel by Louise Candlish, The Heights.
He thinks he’s safe up there. But he’ll never be safe from you.
The Heights is a tall, slender apartment building among the warehouses of Tower Bridge, its roof terrace so discreet you wouldn’t know it existed if you weren’t standing at the window of the flat directly opposite. But you are. And that’s when you see a man up there – a man you’d recognize anywhere. He’s older now and his appearance has subtly changed, but it’s definitely him.
Which makes no sense at all since you know he has been dead for over two years. You know this for a fact.
Because you’re the one who killed him. It’s time to confess what we did up there.
‘Kieran Watts has been dead for over two years when I see him standing on the roof of a building in Shad Thames…’
Louise Candlish knows how to write a twisty novel and this book is so twisty. The Heights begins with an intriguing opening which grabbed my attention. A woman, Ellen, sees a man, Kieran, standing on top of a luxury apartment building in Shad Thames, London. But seeing him leaves her confused and paralysed with fear. He shouldn’t be there. Why? Because he’s dead and she’s the one who killed him.
After reading that opening I had to get to the bottom of what was going on here. Who was the man who Ellen saw? Why is she so sure that she killed him when it seems clear that he’s alive and well? Louise Candlish has written a compulsive page turner. It made for fascinating reading as Louise revealed more about what led up to that moment when she sees Kieran on top of a building. Was this the same man who she thought it was? How on earth did he survive if she believes she killed him?
Ellen is such an intriguing character. As Louise Candlish began to reveal more about who she is it made so much sense why she wanted Kieran dead. I could understand why she wanted this outcome and I think any parent in her position would in their deepest thoughts. Ellen is grieving for her son who died in a horrific accident, and she blames Kieran for what happened, after he left him behind in the car and saved himself. Kieran was also behind the wheel at the time of the accident. She wants Kieran to pay for what he has done.
Louise Candlish crafted her story so well. Louise portrayed Ellen’s grief as she is coming to terms with the loss of her son so well. Her anger at what happened comes through strongly on the page. You can see her desire to get justice for her son, even if it does mean taking matters into her own hands. I wanted to know just how far she was going to be prepared to go to achieve this. It made me think about what I would do if I was in her shoes. It made for such a gripping story. I loved the past and present narrative as well. Louise Candlish told this so well as we see the immediate aftermath of Ellen’s son’s death.
When that twist came at the end of the book, I was completely knocked for six. It was so cleverly done, and I loved how Louise wrapped everything up. I thought the ending was very satisfactory and it was so tense as everything came together and the final scenes came out. I had to know what was going to happen.
I loved this book. I’m certain it’s going to be one of my favourite reads of the year. Louise Candlish is such a brilliant writer. If you’re yet to read her books, then you really need to bump them up your TBR pile. I can’t wait to read what she writes next.
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication date: 5th August 2021
Print length: 445 pages
The Heights is available to buy: