Book Review: The Last Thing to Burn by Will Dean

26 October 2020




 Hey Readers & Friends,


I'm excited to share this review with you today as I NEED to speak to SOMEONE about it, even if it is just the void of my blog. I was lucky enough to be able to read The Last Thing to Burn by Will Dean early - it's releasing on 7th January (put it in your diaries!) 


I went into it having no real clue what to expect, I thought it would be like most domestic thrillers but oh my GOD I got something entirely different, unlike anything I've read before. It was like Stephen King's Stephen King's Misery meets... Robert Bloch's Psycho maybe? But with a domestic edge? I'm not really sure, I can't compare it to other books because it was so different to what I usually read. 


In short, it's basically the story of 'Jane' - but Jane is not her real name. She lives in the middle of nowhere on an isolated farm, where she is being held captive (and has been for years and years) by her 'husband', a horrible leech of a man. I have NEVER hated a villainous character as much as I hate him, he's honestly despicable. Of course, the story follows her attempting to escape his psychotic clutches, her ups and downs of life with him and her struggles with finding hope and losing faith. 


It's a beautiful story, but it's also heartbreaking and very difficult to read at times, with some quite gory details and scenes of abuse. It's the sort of book you have to put down every once in a while and take a deep breath to remind yourself it's a fictional book, everything is okay, he does not exist and she does not exist and the events are all made up. Because the way it's written, you're really put into the story. I can imagine every single room of that horrible house so vividly, I feel all of her emotions alongside her, her fears and her bravery and her ravenous hatred for Lenn. I found myself gripping the edge of my seat, almost shouting at the tension in some of the scenes, urging her on and rooting for her with every bone in my body. I felt her homesickness acutely in other scenes, her desperation throughout the entire novel. 


It's a quick read, but it will stick with me for a really long time, in the same vain as A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara. I can't really stop thinking about it. It touched me a lot, and it held me, gripped, from start to explosive end. I was texting my colleague at parts saying 'I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS HAS HAPPENED', to equally enthusiastic responses when shocking twists and turns were revealed towards the end. 


I can't recommend this enough, and gave it a big fat five stars.

Love, C x


**Full disclosure - this book is one which I am marketer for at Hodder & Stoughton, but all views are completely my own and honest! I work on over 60 titles per year, and don't talk about them on here unless I really love them and want to share!

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