Book Review: The Last House On Needless Street by Catriona Ward

“Killing things is hard, sure, but keeping them see and alive is much more difficult. Oh boy, do I know about that.”

Set to be released on 18th March 2021, The Last House On Needless Street by Catriona Ward tells the story of a serial killer, and a stolen child. In the dark forest at the end of Needless Street, lies something buried. But it’s not what you think. Ted lives in an ordinary house at the end of an ordinary street. All of these things are true, yet they are all lies… You think you know what’s inside the last house on Needless Street. You think you’ve read this story before. That’s where you’re wrong.

Rating:

Thank you to Viper Books for a free advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

When a book has the tagline “You think you’ve read this story before” and it’s praised by the horror God himself, Stephen King, you know this is a book that you want to pick up.

The Last House On Needless Street is a dark and disturbing story that will have you coming up with tons of theories, throwing them away in their absurdity, and then revealing something even more farfetched to completely take you off guard. Most of all, it will leave you filled with compassion, an emotion that you wouldn’t imagine possible with the story’s chilling premise, but one that will take over you completely.

It’s a heavily atmospheric book. All the way through, you are filled with a sense of unease. The last house on Needless Street is not a place you want to be, but where does the darkness really lie? The book constantly deceives you, leading you down various narrative paths, hinting at the truth, convincing you otherwise, and taking you on so many twists and turns that the final revelations might literally blow your mind.

The story is told through four points of view which are intricately weaved together to create a complex psychological thriller oozing with a nerve-wrecking mystery. The owner of the house is Ted. Since the synopsis suggests that you’re going to make many wrong assumptions, you start off by giving him the benefit of the doubt. But you go through so many emotions with him as the story unravels. When you’re close to the end, you think you’ll have it all sussed out. You’ll think you know what type of person Ted is. But there’s still so much to come.

With three other characters telling the story from their points of view, too, the surprises come in thick and fast. Dee adds in context from an outsider’s perspective, Lauren adds more confusion with her insider knowledge, and Olivia adds some humour. You’ll see why when you find out who Olivia is in chapter two, because even this revelation will have you impressed with Ward’s intelligent concepts and structure and eager to divulge the rest.

When I put this book down, I was left with so much admiration towards Ward’s unforgettable story. How can a book make you feel so compelled but so disturbed at the same time? The Last House On Needless Street really messes with your head, but it also opens your eyes to – as the synopsis reads – a story that you think you’ve read before.

Ward handles the story brilliantly, and her author’s notes at the end filled me with some much-needed warmth after such a dark read. Seeing her intentions in writing a story like this and the meticulous research that she did to do her story justice is just as impressive as the story itself.

The Last House On Needless Street is an ambitious book and one that will no doubt leave a mark on you. All I can do is leave you with one final comment: GO AND READ THIS BOOK!

Details:

The Last House On Needless Street by Catriona Ward
Release Date: 18th March 2021
Print Length: 352 pages
Genre: Horror Thriller
Publisher: Viper Books

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