The Death of Mrs. Westaway

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 29 May 2018

Member Reviews

This is a great old-fashioned style mystery:  Creepy house (check), secrets (check), tarot cards (check), an unexpected will (check).  Although there is a bit of Scooby-Doo in this tale, it is a thoroughly enjoyable read.  Your socks won't be blown off by the ending  (you likely will have completed most of the puzzle), but where that feels disappointing in other novels, it felt ok here.  There is not a rush to "wrap it up quickly" as I've noticed recently in similar reads, and the end feels satisfying.  Additionally, some many recent mysteries seem light on character development, but not here.  I fell in love with the main player Hal (Harriet) and the side players, even the marginal ones, were paid careful attention.  If you like a well-written, solid mystery, this will be a pleasure to read.  Thank you NetGalley and publishers for providing an advance copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
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This mystery throws many options and paths in front of you to sift through to solve the mystery. You feel empathy and compassion for Hal and her plight.
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Another thrilling tale from Ruth Ware! Hal is caught up in money troubles after the death of her mother, so a mysterious invitation to a Mrs Westaway's funeral and possible inheritance drives her far from home to a family she didn't know existed. Yet, she's not sure they are her family. Her mother was tight-lipped about her parents, but something isn't adding up. From top to bottom, there are plenty of family secrets and twists to keep you on your toes.
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I loved the Woman in Cabin 10 so I thought I would give another Ruth Ware a go.  The Death of Mrs. Westware was another page turner just like The Woman in Cabin 10.   There was suspense and subtle dread.  I couldn't wait to turn the page and find out what happens. This was a classic whodunit, red herrings, twists and turns.  Overall it was a good read

Hal barely makes a living as a tarot card reader who’s hiding from the local loan shark when she gets a letter informing her of an inheritance from a grandmother she never knew about. Hal shows up at the funeral and discovers a  family members,three uncles, her mother failed to mention. Here begins Hal’s quest for the truth about her background, her deceased mother and now a deceased grandmother she didn’t know she had.
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This is a delightful homage to Agatha Christie. The opening setting at Bath in the off-season was something I'd not encountered before. I enjoyed every bit of this.
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Better than The Woman in Cabin 10! I enjoyed this mystery that started out a little slow but once it picked up, I was eager to get to the bottom of it! Ware did a great job with the character development and twist at the end!
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A modern day Gothic mystery with interesting family dynamics and a old mansion with many hidden secrets. This is my first novel by British novelist Ruth Ware. She has written several psychological mysteries and  has a large fan base, which led me to pick this up. Nice writing and a solid mystery.
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The Death of Mrs. Westaway opens on Hal, a struggling fortune-teller. Hal was already amongst the disadvantaged even before her mother's tragic death and her resulting bout of depression. But now with the local loan shark sending out goons to collect on a loan she has no money to repay, Hal feels hopeless. When a letter arrives mistaking her as the inheritor of a substantial estate, Hal sees it as the only possible escape from under the thumb of the loan shark with her bones intact. What Hal does not realize is that by claiming this inheritance, she might uncover the dark past of the Westaway family, a past that they want to remain buried.
Ruth Ware has done it again! The Death of Mrs. Westaway upholds the reputation Ware has built with her previous hits, The Woman in Cabin 10 and The Lying Game. Ware uses her tried and true formula of a flawed heroine discovering secrets from the past that others want to remain hidden forever, and at all costs. While this is emerging as Ware's signature formula, she has made The Death of Mrs. Westaway unique and intriguing.
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Since reading The Woman In Cabin 10 I have read every one of Ruth Ware’s novels. The Death of Mrs. Westaway is my favorite! I didn’t see where it was headed a good portion of the story and I couldn’t put it down! I really liked Hal and was sympathetic to her situation. That is something that is sometimes lacking in Ware’s books. They are always well written and wonderful mysteries but I don’t always like the protagonist or even really care if things turn out well. Not the case in this one. A home run!
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The Death of Mrs. Westaway is my first Ruth Ware novel - one I was looking forward to reading!  I found it very slow to start - I actually abandoned it but knew I wanted to give it another go, and I am so glad I did, because a only a few pages later the novel picked up speed and never looked back.  I found my reading was enhanced by the Whispersync between Kindle and audiobook... I have papers to grade and simply could not focus until I finished the novel.  The plot twist at the end of the novel I had not predicted whatsoever and completely ripped to shreds my predictions.  Despite a painfully slow start, I really enjoyed this well written psychological thriller and am really looking forward to reading previous Ware publications.  Thanks to #NetGalley for the opportunity to preview #TheDeathofMrsWestaway by @RuthWareWriter - this was jaw dropping-ly amazing!!
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I'm a big fan of Ruth Ware's books and The Death of Mrs. Westaway was no disappointment!  I loved the chilly setting of a woman who, against all odds, tries to better her life by pretending to be someone she isn't.  Or is she? That's the question that's eventually answered and all loose-ends are neatly tied up.
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God was this book sloooooooow.  It quite literally put me to sleep on several occasions while trying to slog through it.  The chapters are short but the actual story unfolds at a snail's pace.  Ware tries to set the scene of a creepy old mansion holding dark family secrets but the only way she is able to do this  is by telling the reader (repeatedly) that something is "off" versus showing it through action.  It's not until the final quarter of the book where it actually begins to attempt at being a thriller or a mystery or whatever genre it's supposed to be.  I never connected with the main character and grew extremely irritated by every dialogue exchange containing ellipses with conversations which just....trail off....
I would hope Ware's previous titles try a little harder with their core mysteries, as not only is this one easy to see from a mile away, but the "twist" reveal makes absolutely no sense and contradicts events in previous chapters.  This was a huge disappointment all around.
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The Death of Mrs. Westaway was the perfect read for me going into the fall season. The tone of the book was very foreboding -- as if you knew something bad was going to happen but you did not yet know what it was. Ruth Ware did a great job keeping my interest and slowly unraveling the mystery AND surprising me. The read was like her others -- very atmospheric which I could appreciate cause it was as if I was right there. I highly recommend for those who love mysteries with the right amount of surprise.
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Sadly, I could not get through this book. I felt like it moved too slowly and it didn't hold my interest. Thank you for the galley!
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Ruth Ware is a solid mystery/suspense writer and this one is very much like the others -- a well-defined main character caught in a web of lies and deceit with lot of twists and turns and red herrings to keep the reader turning pages.

Hal (Harriet) receives a letter informing her of an inheritance (a timely letter since she is broke and in debt) from a grandmother she never knew. She's skeptical, but follows the instructions to meet with the family since she has no other option at this moment. She finds feuding brothers, a creepy house, and an equally creepy housekeeper. The perfect set up for a suspense novel.

All ends when the long-held secrets are revealed (no surprise there) and the reader is left satisfied. While I have enjoyed all Ware's novels, I don't really find them as captivating as others seem to. Although suitably creepy and suspenseful, I've never been completely consumed by the story or character. I want to know what happens, but don't really care. Certainly a worthwhile read and a nice way to pass the time, but not something that will haunt my memories like some other suspense novels have.
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Best novel Ruth Ware has put out yet. In a Dark, Dark Wood was good and had me wanting to read more by this author; however, The Woman in Cabin 10 almost turned me off. The Lying Game was forgettable. Luckily, this one will have me reading more from Ware. 
Well-paced, interesting characters, suspense. 4 out of 5 Stars.
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Hal was perfectly content to be with her mother, despite the scant resources her mother made as a tarot card reader. But when her mother dies suddenly in a car accident, Hal takes over the business. When a letter comes informing her of an inheritance by a rich relative, Hal jumps at the chance to become solvent, even if she isn't the correct person the letter should have been sent to. But when she comes to the family, she finds that she is not only becoming attached to them, there are also secrets which should have been out in the open long ago. In a mystery that is akin to Agatha Christie, Ruth Ware has developed a story that intrigues those who enjoy figuring out the threads of mysteries, without the over dramatizing car chases and over abundant "running through the woods" scenes. This book is sure to go in our library.
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Ruth Ware spins out a story about a young woman, Hal, who receives notice of an inheritance. An inheritance from a family that she didn't know existed, thanks to the secrecy of her recently deceased mom. The author brings several generational stories together by presenting the novel from Hal's view as well as from the words of a long forgotten diary. As Hal learns, the truth is indeed twisted and subject to the eye of the beholder. This novel will keep you guessing from start to finish. It has all the makings of a fascinating tale for the big screen.
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To be honest, I have become jaded by all the “thrillers” that have become so popular on the book racks these days. I have loved gothic stories and mysteries, scary and horror books al my life. I started this “thriller” with low expectations, but soon became engrossed in the story. I got to know the characters, got caught up in the mystery and even made quite a few wrong assumptions along the way. The characters were all interesting and all quite cryptic in their motivations and secrets. I was never sure about the assumptions that I was making about them and they kept their secrets until the end. The venues themselves became almost characters in the story. I think that if a movie were made of this book, I would be saying, “well that’s not how I saw it” or hopefully “oh, that’s right!”

 I liked the inclusion of the Tarot cards and their meanings. It prompted me to research the cards a bit and discover the beauty of many of them.  I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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At a desperate point in her life, Hal receives a letter from a solicitor informing her of an inheritance from a relative - a relative she knows is not hers.   Still, it looks like the only way out of her money problems, and she decides to go to the funeral, thus setting up a very Agatha Christie-like mystery.  If you love mysteries, and want to dive into a creepy story, then don’t miss The Death of Mrs. Westaway.
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