Book Reviews · BOTMs, · Fiction · Thriller

Book Review: ‘Behind the Red Door’ by Megan Collins

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Thank you @atriabooks for my gifted copy of ‘Behind the Red Door‘ by Megan Collins, author of  2019’s ‘The Winter Sister! (pub 8/4)

QOTD: Are you a fan of psychological suspense/thrillers? If so, then have a got a goodie for you!

Megan Collins returns w/ a darkly thrilling novel about a woman who comes to believe that she has a connection to a decades old kidnapping & now that the victim has gone missing again, begins a frantic search to learn what happened in the past.

When Fern Douglas sees the news about Astrid Sullivan, a 34-yr-old missing woman from Maine, she is positive that she knows her. Fern’s husband is sure it’s because of Astrid’s famous kidnapping—& equally famous return—20 yrs ago, but Fern has no memory of that, even though it happened an hour outside her New Hampshire hometown. And when Astrid appears in Fern’s recurring nightmare, one in which a girl reaches out to her, pleading, Fern fears that it’s not a dream at all, but a memory.

Back home in NH, Fern purchases a copy of Astrid’s recently published memoir—which may have provoked her original kidnapper to abduct her again—& as she reads through its chapters & visits the people & places within it, she discovers more evidence that she has an unsettling connection to the missing woman. As Fern’s search becomes increasingly desperate, she hopes to remember her past so she can save Astrid in the present…before it’s too late.

Featuring Collins’s signature dark, tension inducing & all-consuming prose w/ plenty of shocking twists, ‘Behind the Red Door’ is a suspense-filled thriller that will haunt you long after you turn the last page.

With well-drawn characters (some you will love to hate), this ominous, gripping, & psychologically harrowing page-turner was so hard to put down! I was utterly spellbound! If you haven’t already, get ‘Behind the Red Door‘ on your TBR lists, pre-order it & while you are pre-ordering, why not add Collin’s previous novel, ‘The Winter Sister’ to your cart as well? I got that one from Book of the Month last year & loved it! (Click HERE to join BOTM & get ‘The Winter Sister’ as an add-on book! Click HERE for more info on BOTM & why they are the BEST bookclub out there!).

More praise for ‘Behind the Red Door‘:

“In Behind the Red Door, Megan Collins has achieved something remarkable—a dark, disturbing story that is both elegant and fascinating. Exquisite writing, compelling characters and a story so captivating I finished it in a weekend. Few books live up to the word chilling, but this one does.”
—Samantha Downing, USA Today bestselling author of My Lovely Wife

“Spellbinding, poignant and atmospheric, Behind The Red Door is one of those rare stories you can get utterly lost in. With writing so richly evocative I could vividly imagine every detail, this is a mesmerizing tale in which family bonds are broken, lifelong secrets are exposed, and a woman who suffers a debilitating anxiety disorder must find the truth about her connection to a decades-old kidnapping. Intensely moving, beautifully written and thoroughly enjoyable, I can’t recommend this highly enough!”
—Christina McDonald, USA Today bestselling author of The Night Olivia Fell

Behind the Red Door isn’t just a gripping, finely-tuned thriller, it’s a masterful meditation on fear. Dark forests, crumbling cabins, and mutating nightmares all populate this New England landscape where one woman may hold the key to saving a kidnapping victim. But in order to do so, she’ll have to confront a lifetime of terror, including the ultimate fear: not knowing who can be trusted or where the monsters live. I was hooked from the first page.”
—Mindy Mejia, author of Strike Me Down

“Collins nimbly orchestrates Fern’s growing sense of terror as she slowly sifts in echoes of long-repressed sounds and sights…a tricky mystery. Even in the final pages, Collins avoids any expected resolution, leaving the reader deliciously unsettled and disturbed. A dark psychological thriller riddled with twisted family dynamics.”
Kirkus Reviews

“Megan Collins is the master of emotionally resonant, deeply personal suspense fiction where the small details are just as chilling as the dramatic turns. Behind the Red Door is gripping and gorgeously-written and, like her stellar debut The Winter Sister, I’m certain this book will haunt me for years to come.”
—Layne Fargo, author of Temper

“Taut, provocative, disturbing—Megan Collins’ sophomore novel is more than a thriller; it’s a dark and deeply compelling examination of the knife’s edge between trust and fear. With muscular prose and richly wrought characters, Behind the Red Door grabbed me, startled me, and didn’t let go until I’d torn through every chilling word.”
—Andrea Bartz, author of The Lost Night and The Herd

“Atmospheric and haunting, Behind the Red Door is at once a chilling tale of complicated family dynamics and a riveting mystery. Elegant prose, intriguing characters and taut pacing make this book unputdownable.” 
—Daniela Petrova, author of Her Daughter’s Mother 

“Harrowing… Collins plays her cards carefully to maximize suspense.”
Publishers Weekly

Behind the Red Door is stunning in every way. Fern Douglas digs her fingers into your brain until you’re hooked and want more. I’m still reeling from this. Megan Collins is a masterful writer and this novel is full of twists you didn’t expect. It will leave you breathless and shaking in the best way.”
—Amina Akhtar, author of #FashionVictim

The Winter Sister‘ by Megan Collins (pub 2/2019):

A young woman haunted by the past returns home to care for her ailing mother & begins to dig deeper into her sister’s unsolved murder.
Sixteen years ago, Sylvie’s sister Persephone never came home. Out too late with the boyfriend she was forbidden to see, Persephone was missing for three days before her body was found—& years later, her murder remains unsolved.

In the present day, Sylvie returns home to care for her estranged mother, Annie, as she undergoes treatment for cancer. Prone to unexplained “Dark Days” even before Persephone’s death, Annie’s once-close bond with Sylvie dissolved in the weeks after their loss, making for an uncomfortable reunion all these years later. Worse, Persephone’s former boyfriend, Ben, is now a nurse at the cancer center where Annie is being treated. Sylvie’s always believed Ben was responsible for the murder—but she carries her own guilt about that night, guilt that traps her in the past while the world goes on around her.

As she navigates the complicated relationship with her mother, Sylvie begins to uncover the secrets that fill their house—and what really happened the night Persephone died. As it turns out, the truth really will set you free, once you can bear to look at it.
The Winter Sister’ is a mesmerizing portrayal of the complex bond between sisters, between mothers and daughters alike, and forces us to ask ourselves—how well do we really know the people we love most?

Click HERE to add ‘Behind the Red Door‘ to your Goodreads TBR.
Click HERE to add ‘The Winter Sister‘ to your Goodreads TBR.
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Click HERE to find ‘Behind the Red Door‘ (& other books) at an indie bookstore using BookStoreLink.

Megan Collins is the author of ‘The Winter Sister’ & ‘Behind the Red Door’. She teaches creative writing in Connecticut, where she lives, & is the managing editor of 3Elements Review. A poet & fiction writer, her work has appeared in many journals, including Off the CoastSpillway, Tinderbox Poetry Journal, & Rattle.
Visit her at: Twitter Facebook Instagram Website

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