The Party Wall
By Stevie Davies
Whatever I can do for Freya, I’ll gladly and honourably do, he told himself, grateful for the calm intentness of his spirit. She schooled him. She made him a better person. There was an overarching sense of forgiveness. Not that there was anything Mark should be forgiven for.
Mark lives next door to Freya. When her husband dies tragically, he determines to be her saviour come what may. Whether that means walking the dog, minding the house or taking her out on day trips. However, her neighbours the other side keep getting in the way, as do her two lumpen brothers-in-law… But Mark has another life, one he hasn’t told Freya about, one that increasingly impinges on his desire to make Freya his own. As he lies in
his bed at night, listening to her movements the other side of the wall, the gentle sighing and creaking of bed springs, he plots his movements towards an idyllic future. A future that doesn’t feature the ex-girlfriend who still lives in his other house, or his dead wife. As Mark ingratiates himself, Freya – lost in a sea of grief – only slowly begins to realise that Mark’s motives may not be quite as compassionate as they seem and her eyes are opened to the threat she has guilelessly invited into her home.
LoveReading Staff Pick of the Week and a LoveReading Liz Robinson Pick of the Month September 2020
Books Council of Wales Book of the Month October 2020
Welsh Libraries Book of the Month October 2020
"Davies talent is in her excavation of the tumultuous, contradictory, human soul. ‘Your pen unearthed truths you hardly knew you knew…' she writes. ‘There are memories that cannot permit themselves to be remembered. They are caught in an internal wall-space.' The Party Wall takes us into those hidden places – in a powerful, remarkable novel." Anne Lauppe-Dunbar
"This is a perfect novel for our post-lockdown times. Witty, grief-stricken and packed with intrigue, Stevie Davies's tale about a budding, dangerous relationship between neighbours is a beautifully wrought page-turner." Francesca Rhydderch
"acute and sensitive insight into human nature on the edge... You take the reader into places of the mind one’s not visited before." Lyndall Gordon
"Stevie Davies is a diamond among writers and 'The Party Wall' scintillates with her brilliance. This anatomy of malevolence and redemption is a masterpiece. Davies is at her most terrifyingly incisive as she peels back the skin of civilisation to reveal the secret impulses and embarrassments, torments and pain that lie just beneath the surface, just through the wall - where an attentive neighbour can be a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
'The Party Wall' is especially unnerving in a time when we’re all inescapably battened down with our neighbours. A perfect lockdown read!" Julie Bertagna
"What an absolutely chilling and incredibly gripping tale this is! ...The first chapter pulled me up short, it had so much power, the words in themselves so quiet, yet they hurled a storm of awareness at me... Stevie Davies has a beautifully twisted pen, her writing really spoke to me. The little things matter, they build to create the most unnerving picture of obsession and I almost wanted to read while hiding behind a cushion. Yet this isn’t an obvious in-your-face fright-fest, it is a thoughtfully observed piece with fully formed characters. Sliding its way rather stealthily into thoughts, The Party Wall is an intense, stimulating read. I didn’t want to put it down, and have chosen this novel as one of my Liz Picks of the Month."
Liz Robinson, LoveReading
"…magnificent…the characters are so alive, intense"
"There are many reasons why Stevie Davies’ latest novel, 'The Party Wall', will strike a chord with anyone who has spent time in lockdown this year, but Davies’ ability to create a sense of intensity and isolation is certainly a key part of that. Focusing on the lives of neighbours who live in tightly packed terrace houses overlooking a small green, Davies invites us to take a glimpse into the dangers of spiralling thoughts and uninterrupted fixations in a read which starts by applying a gentle hold to its readers, but draws you in until becomes entirely gripping."
Emma Schofield, Wales Arts Review
Categories: Crime / Mystery / Thriller, Fiction, Novels
First Published by Honno: 17th September 2020