My rating: 4 of 5 stars
You Pull Me In, the debut novel by Anne-Cecile Ville is a hard and gritty thriller.
Lucy has escaped from years of abuse from her mother in Ireland and moved to London in the hope of pursuing an acting career and be happy. With the help of her friend John, she’s found an apartment to share with 2 other girls Jen and Emma. Amidst attending auditions, she joins a pub to make ends meet and there meets Mark. Lucy is instantly infatuated and smitten so much that she doesn’t hesitate to make the initial move. But soon Mark is coercing her into doing things that otherwise she wouldn’t dare, rules are broken inside the house and just like that she is homeless and dependent on Mark. Moving into a dingy squat with Mark and other poor souls, drugs become a necessity and Lucy lets herself go and severs ties with everyone including her friend John.Almost a year of being afraid, Lucy finds it difficult to overcome the fear of Mark and his ways.
Interspersed with the Princess Diana’s life story, You Pull Me In was a difficult book to read. Lucy’s thought process in the first half of the book felt erratic but the 2nd half of the book just zoomed into a thrilling and tense climax with an ending that I never expected. I loved how the author used the dog Max to show the similarities of so-called love abuse that Mark bestows on both of them. The no-holds barred approach to the use of drugs and its dependency makes for some painful reading but I loved the characters in the book including Richard who is at most times a blockhead.
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