Gemma Robinson comes into Elliot’s life like a whirlwind, and they marry and settle into his home. When she asks him if her parents can come to stay for a couple of weeks, he is keen to oblige – he just doesn’t quite know what he’s signing up for.
The Robinsons arrive with Gemma’s sister, Chloe, a mysterious young woman who refuses to speak or leave her room. Elliot starts to suspect that the Robinsons are hiding a dark secret. And then there are the scars on his wife’s body that she won’t talk about . . .
As Elliot’s in-laws become more comfortable in his home, encroaching on all aspects of his life, it becomes clear that they have no intention of moving out. To protect Gemma, and their marriage, Elliot delves into the Robinsons’ past. But is he prepared for the truth?
Hi and welcome to my review of what is quite possibly the most frustrating book I’ve read all year! Well, to be fair, not the most frustrating book, but the book with the most frustrating characters, who got under my skin in seconds and annoyed the living daylights out of me!
This is a book about in-laws from hell. Now, truth be told, I love my in-laws! For the record, I’m not saying this to suck up, they don’t speak English so there’s absolutely zero chance they’ll read this. My mum-in-law knits cardigans for me, takes in skirts or dresses that are too long, crochets amigurumi friends and bookmarks and she never gets in my face 😄 She’s the best! However. If she were to move in, I’d go crazy! Like Elliot in Here To Stay, my home is my haven, I wouldn’t want my safe space to be invaded. And neither does Elliot. Just married and deeply in love, of course he doesn’t mind his wife’s parents and sister Chloe staying for a week or two while they find a new place to live. He thinks he’ll manage, he thinks they’ll be gone before he knows it. He’s wrong. From day 1, the Robinsons take up his space, they defile his sanctuary, they destroy his calm, they… ruin a paperback – gasp! (Incidentally, said paperback is a copy of Sweetmeat, which made me laugh, I love it when an author inserts a nod to their previous work.) Worst of all, it seems like they are planning on staying…
There’s this constant threat emanating from Here To Stay. What will the Robinsons do next to drive Elliot (and me with him) up the wall? What are the Robinsons hiding? Will they do something nasty to Charlie the cat? Are they just really annoying or are they truly evil? So many questions that I absolutely needed an answer to, so many questions that kept me turning the pages as fast as I could in search of answers. I got answers. They were NOT what I had been expecting! As a huge fan of Mark Edwards’s work, I know he usually succeeds in taking me by surprise, so I was kind of prepared for some of it, but nothing could have prepared for the rest of it! I have to admit, I love it when Mark Edwards goes evil 😂
Here To Stay joins Follow Me Home at the number 1 spot of my list of favourite Mark Edwards books, and I will be very much surprised if it doesn’t end up on my list of fav books of the year. Here To Stay is a truly excellent psychological thriller and I cannot recommend it enough!