The Imposter by Anna Wharton | TheBookBuff Review

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So, I was invited to read a yet unreleased advance readers copy of The Imposter by Anna Wharton, and I was blown away! The Imposter is a psychological thriller. What surprised me was that even though it is written by a debut author, it completely reels you in!

I was told that it is a spine-chilling suspense novel, and it totally lives up to its expectation!

The Imposter
Author: Anna Wharton
Published Date: April 8, 2021
Publisher: Pan MacMillan Mantle
Category: General Fiction (Adult) | Mystery & Thriller

Book Review

5 Star Rating for a Book Review

Rating: 5/5

Verdict:

There are books you just know should be a bestseller – and The Imposter by Anna Wharton is definitely one for me! It has this eerie, bewitching tone akin to The Silent Patient or The Girl on the Train. If this is how Anna debuts, then I am willing to sign up for her next book already!

My verdict is to just go for it! It is certainly slow-paced, but somehow that adds to its very bewitching quality. The book is written for readers who like to get into the head of the narrator and experience the world as she sees it. I tore through this book at a rapid pace, and I really think that is how it should be read – to keep the momentum going. 

Plotline:

This is a story about Chloe. A young lady who has this fly-on-the-wall kind of personality. She just blends in anywhere, anytime. 

Chloe works in a local newspaper handling news archives. She stays with Nan, who has dementia, and requires great love and care. Chloe dotes on her, and is determined to hold on to her. 

While going through news archives she chances upon a story about a girl who went missing decades ago. Chloe instantly identifies with the sense of loss and loneliness the missing child’s parents must feel. She wants to help.

Chloe holds the idea of a “proper family” very close to her – to perhaps a point of obsession. 

There are lies everywhere, and it is intriguing to see how the story reveals itself layer by layer.

My Opinion:

The characters aren’t fleshed out completely, and there is good reason for it. Since, you are seeing the world from the protagonist’s POV you can grasp only so much. 

I did, however, want to know more about Chloe.  It surely closes more quickly than the entire pace of the book, but perhaps that is for effect. 

How to Buy the Book?

Well, you can wishlist this book at present as it is slated for release on April 8, 2021.

Will update links whenever it becomes available. – general link: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=The+Imposter&i=stripbooks&adid=082VK13VJJCZTQYGWWCZ&campaign=211041&creative=374001&tag=x_gr_onea_bb_sin-20&ref=x_gr_onea_bb_sin

Backstory:

So, the author, Anna Wharton, has ghostwritten Sunday Times Bestseller – Somebody I Used To Know by Wendy Mitchell. 

Interestingly, this book is a memoir about dementia and how the disease has influenced Wendy Mitchell’s life, tastes and personality overall. Wendy’s blog is aptly named – Which Me Am I Today. It reminded me of the character –  Nan – from the book, The Imposter.

Wendy and Anna did a podcast together: Do our memories make us who we are? – books podcast 

You can skip the first 15 min or so, if you want to go directly to them, but I recommend you hear out the neurologist talking about how memories define our personality. 

Additionally, the plot of The Imposter reminded me of the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. The three-year-old seemingly vanished into thin air while she was holidaying with her parents in Portugal. 

The case was first reported in 2007. Thirteen years on, it still remains one of the most widely profiled missing persons news story!

Little Madeleine was in bed, her twin siblings too, as her parents stepped out to have dinner with friends. The restaurant was just a short walk – approx. 55 meters / 180 feet – away. Throughout her mother was checking in on the kids, yet Madeleine was discovered missing from her bed. 

There have been multiple ‘sightings’ across the world, but none of the leads have ever panned out. 

The parents have over the years sustained incredible scrutiny. With no answers still, the British couple have appealed multiple times for information. 

News links: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-53541181

Wikipedia link: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disappearance_of_Madeleine_McCann

More information about the author:

Anna Wharton is a former print and broadcast journalist who has spent 20 years in the industry. She’s written for newspapers such as The Times and The Guardian. 

After reading her debut novel, it isn’t surprising that as a ghost writer she already has a Sunday Times Bestseller – Somebody I Used To Know by Wendy Mitchell and Orwell Prize nominee CUT: One Woman’s Fight Against FGM in Britain Today by Hibo Wardere to her credit. 

Her other ghostwritten memoirs are: Breaking The Silence: My journey of discovery as transformative surgery allowed me to hear for the first time by Jo Milne, and Brave: How I Rebuilt My Life When Love Turned to Hate by Adele Bellis.

I found her TedX YouTube video on The Power of Storytelling here

Also, found an interesting story she’d written for The Times (London): Why I’ll Never Tell My Daughter That She’s Pretty. 

Questions for the Book Club

IMP: SPOILER ALERT, visit this section only after you’ve read the book:

  1. How do you imagine Chloe’s childhood to have been like?
  2. Chloe, Patrick, Jossie – all lie. Are these  lies justified? Do you think they are all trapped by their own deceit? 
  3. Do you think Maureen too is lying to herself? 
  4. Is Hollie an ideal best friend? 
  5. Do you think in today’s social media world we actually have more secrets or less?

Disclaimer: Thanks to #NetGalley & #MantleBooks for #TheImposter – an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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