Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris is a psychological thriller and suspense novel that features married couple Grace and Jack, who have been married for a year and seemingly have the perfect marriage. Jack, a lawyer who works with domestic abuse victims, seems to be devoted to his wife Grace. The truth is very different, and the author does a great job in showing how isolated Grace is – she has no one to rely on or trust, and she is responsible for her teenage sister Millie, who has Down’s syndrome and will be moving in with them when she turns 18. Jack’s attempts at creating a convincing facade of marital bliss are successful among his friends, but when Grace meets Esther, a new friend in Jack’s social circle, she begins to hope that there might be a way out.
The story, which is told from Grace’s perspective, switches between their courtship and early days of marriage and the present until the two collide in an exciting, dark, and compulsively readable way. At the risk of being a spoiler (but because I would have been more inclined to pick up this book had I known more about what kind of story it was): the dark secret behind their marriage is really much darker than you might think going in, and I started reading this book expecting one variant on the suspense genre (domestic abuse thriller), and instead getting a different one (kidnapping or imprisonment narrative).
This is a marriage-gone-wrong story of the grim and suspenseful variety, and Paris shines in creating a tense and claustrophobic atmosphere. Grace’s efforts to find a way out of her predicament takes some twists and turns in this dark and compulsively readable book. I did not want to put this one down until I was finished – a riveting read.