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I See You

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The twisty, gripping number one bestseller from Richard and Judy Book Club winner Clare Mackintosh, author of I Let You Go.

Winner of the Richard and Judy Summer Book Club 2017

When Zoe Walker sees her photo in the classifieds section of a London newspaper, she is determined to find out why it's there. There's no explanation: just a grainy image, a website address and a phone number. She takes it home to her family, who are convinced it's just someone who looks like Zoe. But the next day the advert shows a photo of a different woman, and another the day after that.

Is it a mistake? A coincidence? Or is someone keeping track of every move they make...

If you like Shari Lapena, Paula Hawkins, Rachel Abbott, B A Paris, Fiona Barton, Ruth Ware and CL Taylor, you'll love this gripping psychological thriller.

386 pages, Kindle Edition

First published February 21, 2017

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About the author

Clare Mackintosh is the multi-award-winning author of New York Times bestseller I LET YOU GO, and Sunday Times bestsellers I SEE YOU, LET ME LIE, AFTER THE END, HOSTAGE and THE LAST PARTY Translated into forty languages, her books have sold more than two million copies worldwide, and have spent a combined total of 64 weeks in the Sunday Times bestseller chart. Her latest novel is A GAME OF LIES, the second in a crime series featuring Welsh detective DC Ffion Morgan.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 7,146 reviews
Profile Image for karen.
3,988 reviews170k followers
June 25, 2018
this is a fun thriller, but it requires the reader to accept its premise without questioning its logic, and to suspend disbelief like a mofo. if you can do that, you'll have a good time. if you cannot, this is not the book for you.

i can medium do it, so while i enjoyed reading this for the rush and the whodunnit of it all, there were just certain things i could not look past as a reader. it's one of those page-turnery books i loved at the time of reading, but it's forgettable and a little silly after it's all over.

it's a psychological suspense novel and it's one whose goal is to take the quotidian and creepify it, so the reader is left unsettled and uneasy in a familiar, taken-for-granted part of their daily life. this one focuses on the already-harrowing experience of public transportation, casting a sinister light on the straphanging lifestyle. which, yes, is what The Girl on the Train did, but this is completely its own thing, although paula hawkins does blurb it, because british transportation-based thriller writing women gotta stick together.

zoe walker is stuck on a stalled train during her commute home one night, forced to read the parts of the paper she wouldn't ordinarily in her desperation for diversion, when she notices a photo of herself in a classified ad with no information other than a phone number and a web address: findtheone.com. naturally confused and concerned, once she gets home she tries to get to the bottom of it, but the number is a dead end, and the site requires a password. her grown children and live-in boyfriend don't share her alarm - assuring her that the small picture might be of someone else entirely, and zoe reluctantly concedes, although she is still a bit apprehensive. when she discovers that a woman whose picture ran in the same ad space was later murdered, her dread grows and she contacts the police, who do not take her concerns seriously until the pattern continues and zoe finds herself in real danger.

the story is split narratively between zoe and kelly swift, a detective demoted to smalltime police work after assaulting a rape suspect, who has been trying to claw her way back to the big leagues ever since. she sees connections between zoe's story and a pickpocketing crime she's been assigned, and she insinuates herself into the case, thrilled to be investigating real crimes once more, eager to impress the other detectives and shed her tarnished reputation. which does not mean that she's going to play it cool and careful - for all the strong contributions she makes to the investigation, she also behaves unprofessionally a number of times, compromising the case and making more enemies.

in the tradition of psychological suspense, paranoia grows throughout the novel, and suspicion is cast on many people close to zoe, increasing her anxiety and leaving her with no one to trust. many red herrings, many tense situations, much atmospheric dread.

and also a ton of implausibilities, some of which i will address in spoilertown below.

if you are yourself on a stalled train looking for a diversion, this is an excellent choice. okay, that's a bit glib and unfair - this is an entertaining book, but you really need to avoid questioning it, or you're just going to get yourself into a tizzy. it's worth a read, but it's not changing the psych suspense game or anything.

my gripes follow, and they are spoilery, so don't ruin the book for yourself by clicking, okay?

come to my blog!
Profile Image for Melissa.
647 reviews28.7k followers
July 14, 2017
Turns out, it might be harder to write a second novel than a debut. I’ve actually heard, quite a few times now, that second books can be a beast. Clare Mackintosh even takes the time to mention that in the acknowledgements of this book. I imagine it's even more so coming off of a debut as heart-pounding and impressive as I Let You Go. Naturally, that’s where my thoughts went—would Ms. Mackintosh be able to emulate the shock value and sheer brilliance of that masterpiece?

For me, I LET YOU GO was a stunner. The unforeseen twist in that story knocked me on my ass. It’s still a standout in my mind, over a year and hundreds of books later, and one that I’ve measured other psychological thrillers against, time and time again. Including this one. Just in case you don’t fully grasp how spectacular I found that book to be, a pristine signed copy has garnered a coveted spot on my bookshelf among the few others I’ve considered worthy over the years.

This one on the other hand, not so much. The most exciting part of this entire book was the epilogue. Hands down. Had it not been for that last ditch effort to shock her readers with a much needed twist, my rating would have been a little different.

Sure, the thought of being watched and followed was anxiety inducing—in the beginning. The author relies too heavily on that fear to carry this story and without much action, the payoff doesn’t feel big enough. At least not for this suspense junkie. I’m sorry to say, but I found the majority of Zoe and Kelly’s story to be incredibly slow, rife with convenience, clunky with awkward revelations and just not all that exciting. Besides Kelly, there wasn’t a whole lot of depth to any of these characters.

What happened? I had to sit back and consider, was it that my hopes for this one were too high? Was I just another passenger on the expectation train unfairly demanding the same experience her first novel delivered? Maybe, but I’m not sure it mattered. I think regardless of who wrote this book, my feelings would have been the same. There wasn’t anything about these characters or the plot that I found compelling, noteworthy or even believable.

Was it just me or did the entire plot hinge on an idea that seemed pretty unlikely? The author provided an explanation within the story, but unfortunately it wasn’t enough to get this reader on board.

*THANK YOU to Berkley and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Maureen .
1,446 reviews7,062 followers
July 12, 2016
*Thank you to Netgalley and Little Brown Book Group for my ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review*

OMG! Towards the end of this book I felt as if I was standing on the edge of a precipice, my stomach chasing butterflies, and my heart beating fit to burst - but forgive me, I'm getting ahead of myself, because there's much more to come before then.

Nobody thinks too deeply about their daily commute to and from work by Tube, a bit mundane maybe, sometimes stressful, the hustle and bustle, but after reading this it would be hard not to see something a bit more sinister in your daily journey. The guy opposite who you catch looking at you, is it just a glance or does he have fantasies about hurting you or worse?

When Zoe Walker sees her photo in the classified ads in a London newspaper, she is desperate to find out why it's there, and more importantly who put it there. Worse still it's among the ads for 'escorts' chat lines and dating agencies. And so begins this journey of terror that knows no limits, but I don't want to give anything away because I wouldn't want to spoil the journey for YOU.

This is a gripping, cleverly crafted story, that has some jaw dropping moments - and boy I've read more than my fair share of them this year! But along comes 'I See You' and it just darn well blows my socks off! Clare Mackintosh gets right into one's psyche, real deep down, determined to unleash your deepest fears, and she does it wonderfully.

Exciting - Shocking - Unbelievably Clever! Read it - you won't be sorry.
Profile Image for Elyse Walters.
4,010 reviews606 followers
October 18, 2016
Clare Mackintosh wrote a 'timely' psychological grabber and crime chiller. In the near future, most people will live in a total surveillance state -- which for some people breeds fear of conformity and stifles free self expression.

This story clearly opens our eyes to the fact that we are living in a fishbowl.
Governments and large corporations have spread cameras, microphones and other tracking devices all across the globe, and they also have the capacity to store and process oceans of surveillance data in real time. Big brother not only watches our sex life, he analyzes it. Nightmarish! So far, attempts to control surveillance have generally failed.
Yes...there 'are' some obvious benefits: reduction of crime and other smaller abuses that go unreported--- but Clare Mackintosh gave us a precautionary story....and it 'is'
creepy to think about.

Many readers absolutely loved "I let You Go", ( last years much talked about debut mystery crime thriller). I was on the opposite end of that excitement.
However...all my complaints about her first book, are gone in this one. I found this book a little more tangible to connect with and more plausible.
Think about all the people being watched-- especially women. Normal every day women going about business as if they are invisible to the greater world at large.

After Zoe Walker sees her photo in the London Gazette, in the classified section, she is determined to get some answers....especially after immediately the next day the advert shows a photo of another woman.

Can you imagine after there have been women murdered since discovering the picture of yourself --- you come to this thought:
"What if someone's putting in photo's of women they're going to murder, and I'm next?"
Fearful! Would you be able to sleep at night?

There's diversity of personalities in the characters. Kelly is an interesting police officer - with he own set of issues-on the London transport.
The female characters stand out stronger than the men.....( but what's surprising about that?) lol.

As for the ending? You wonder about the twists in these type of stories right? What I liked about it is not only 'who' -- but 'why'. So --even if you think you 'might' know the ending - and do not be so sure ( really: don't)...there's an element added which I found interesting 'with' the ending as much as whodunit.

Thank you to Penguin Random House and the Berkley Team for offering me a copy of this book. To be released Feb. 12, 2017.

Profile Image for j e w e l s.
315 reviews2,418 followers
November 7, 2017
Oh man. I am so bummed. This is not a good follow up to Clare Mackintosh's debut blockbuster, I LET YOU GO. I'm picky, but I loved that book. I even added it to my TWISTER HALL OF FAME shelf!

The problems with I SEE YOU:

First, I figured out the "twisty" ending VERY EARLY in the book. And I'm not usually known for that.

Second, the plot was ridiculously unbelievable. The entire story is built on a naive idea that stalkers would pay big money to join a website that would do the stalking for them. Crazy?????? Yes.

Third, the story is boring. Preachy. When I read fiction, I don't want to be preached to or bored. Just don't.

I see my GR friends are giving high ratings to Mackintosh's third book. Let's hope this is simply a sophomore slump!
Profile Image for Sue.
2,729 reviews222 followers
June 30, 2016
I was so mindful of reading this book. I have come across authors debut novels that have really made an impact on me then their subsequent book has fallen flat, so I opened this with trepidation, but I need not have feared because this author has a talent.

Yep, a real talent that just comes through this book immensely.

She has done it again, she has excelled herself in her writing ability to not just pull you into the book, oh no, you are 'shoved' into it with full force and eagerness, so much so, that its a case of 'one more chapter' one more chapter' and so it goes on until your eyes are dropping.

Its a book that stays in your head, just like her debut novel.

Zoe, London Underground, CCTV, being tracked, are you being followed.

All the characters in this story are so real, from someone who is the main character right down to someone you would feel in life is insignificant.

But they are not.

This is a thrill ride, this is a 'is someone watching me, if so who'.
At times its a scary read, a thrilling read, many bit your nail moments.

This is an author that I will be following.

My thanks to Little, Brown Book Group UK via Net Galley for my early copy.
Profile Image for Norma.
551 reviews12.7k followers
June 13, 2021
When I first realized that this author had a new book out I quickly snapped it up as I absolutely loved her first novel I LET YOU GO and was totally shocked with that unforgettable major twist!  Although I have no intentions of comparing the two novels as they are completely different, this one just didn't work out as well for me.

I SEE YOU by CLARE MACKINTOSH is a good mystery/crime thriller that had me engaged, entertained, and interested enough throughout most of this book to keep me turning those pages but then it lost me somewhere near the end. In my opinion there was an unnecessary twist with the reveal that just didn't pan out for me as the reasoning behind it just didn't seem all that realistic to me and I had a sneaky suspicion who the culprit was going to be.  So I definitely missed out on the shock-factor of the final reveal.

I found the cover and title of this book to be appealing and very fitting which draws you right into this sinister tale of how women are being targeted, watched, and followed while commuting to and from work on the London Underground.

CLARE MACKINTOSH delivers a slow-building suspenseful storyline that is well-written and an angst driven read here. I couldn’t even imagine how scared I would be if I seen a picture of myself in the classifieds for a dating site and was one of the women being stalked and followed like our main character Zoe.  Scary!

I SEE YOU is told in three different alternating points of view between Zoe Walker, PC Kelly Swift, and the stalker.  PC Kelly Swift was told in the third person and sometimes I found her to be a little confusing when she would be recounting some incidents from her past.

To sum it all up it was an entertaining, mostly enjoyable, suspenseful, steady-paced, quick and easy read with a twist ending.

Review written and posted on our themed book blog:
Two Sisters Lost In A Coulee Reading

Coulee: a term applied rather loosely to different landforms, all of which refer to a kind of valley.
Profile Image for Jules.
1,049 reviews198 followers
February 6, 2019
I found this book really hard to put down, especially the second half, which I lived and breathed until the very last page. I’m sure this thriller made my heart stop beating, not once, but twice, having to briefly stop reading in order to catch my breath. I can feel my heart racing just thinking of a couple of specific moments within the book.

The short chapters written in italics throughout the story were rather creepy and gave me the heebie-jeebies.

It would be misleading of me to say this is in any way the same as a TV mini-series I absolutely loved back in the late 1990s called Killer Net, but a couple of things about it really reminded me of it, so made it all that more exciting for me. If you love the idea behind this book, you may wish to watch Killer Net, as I suspect you’ll enjoy it too.

Crikey, what an ending to a great thriller... and breathe!

This is a psychological crime thriller, and for someone like me, who loves psychological thrillers but isn’t a huge fan of crime and police procedural, I think this had the perfect balance.

I would like to thank the publishers for a proof copy of this book, via THE Book Club (TBC) on Facebook, in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Carol.
1,370 reviews2,157 followers
August 17, 2016
Guess who I am....... "I SEE YOU, but you DON'T see me."

In Clare Macintosh's new mystery-thriller, danger is always lurking around the corner, and 'someone' is always watching as fear overtakes Zoe Walker's everyday life.

With stalkers and thieves......rapists and murderers, bits of clues here and there kept me guessing and anxiously turning the pages to find the perpetrator of the deadly scheme; but then, at what should have been the most intense climatic moment of the whole story, the blow-by-blow (sadly) falls flat with an unconvincingly written encounter.

Now, despite my being somewhat disappointed at that crucial point in the plot, I SEE YOU is still a very good police procedural mystery (with a shocking twist) that the reader just 'might' see coming......or not, but (for me) it was just missing that 'big wallop' you find in I LET YOU GO

(A few typos and need of editing in my UK copy)

Profile Image for Esil.
1,118 reviews1,363 followers
February 24, 2017
3+ stars. I can't bring myself to give I See You 4 stars. There were a few too many things that bugged me. But it's definitely a tad higher than a 3 star read. I See You starts with middle aged mother of young adults Zoe seeing a photo of herself in the dating service section of a newspaper. She ends up in contact with police officer Kelly. And the story unfolds from both their points of view. I can't say any more to avoid spoilers.

Some strengths:
-Near the beginning in a brief interlude, the unknown perpetrator declares "Routine will kill you". I loved that MacKintosh's book plays with the reality for urban commuters -- jammed together on subways, buses and streetcars everyday with the same people, but somehow assuming anonymity as we all pretend we're somewhere else through phones, books, daydreams or sleep.
-I liked Kelly. She reminded me a bit of Havers in Elizabeth George's Linley and Havers series -- well meaning and smart, but often overly eager.
-I didn't love Zoe as a character, but I did like the interactions with her various family members.
-The very end was clever, although awfully disturbing.

What bugged me:
-I never quite bought into the purpose for which Zoe and other women's photos ended up in the dating service section of the newspaper without their knowledge.
-Although generally very readable, the middle of I See You felt kind of slack and aimless.
-The "who" part of the resolution irked me. It didn't ring true.

Not a waste of time, but definitely not a favourite read. Many GR friends loved Mackintosh's I Let You Go, which I haven't read. I would definitely give it a try based on what I liked in I See You. Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for an opportunity to read an advance copy.
Profile Image for Linda.
1,288 reviews1,329 followers
March 8, 2017
"If it's just the two of you. Just you, and whoever's behind you. Whoever is chasing you. How fast could you run then?"

Zoe Walker is a deep creature of habit. She leaves the house at the same time every day and boards the same train every day. She even pinpoints her favorite seats and standing positions while pinned together, elbow to elbow and leg to leg, ready to hit the opening door and escape the madness held within.

But something shocking catches her attention while perusing the local paper. It's an advertisement for a hook-up website with her own photo staring back at her. Could this even be possible or is it just a trick of the eye? Zoe dismisses it and resumes her regular family life with her two adult children, Katie and Justin, and her live-in boyfriend, Simon.

But as the days goes by, Zoe has the odd feeling that she's being followed. She contacts the police and a young officer, Kelly, actually believes her. Together, they dog behind this case as the "normal" quickly flips into an "abnormal zone".

Well, now. First and foremost, I am an avid fan of Clare Mackintosh. Her first book, I Let You Go, was so outstanding. That is a hard act to follow even when you're the actual author. Mackintosh has done mega research here in online websites, social media, and police procedures. Perhaps that's part of my lukewarm reaction to this one. When you lead with what you know rather than what the characters feel and how they react with mounting intensity, there lies the problem.

We were able to walk around inside the heads of her highly developed characters in I Let You Go. We related to the slanted walkways in which these individuals fought to balance themselves under unimaginable circumstances. I See You seemed to follow more of a precise formula that drove the storyline and its outcome. It didn't hold me to the page as her first book did.

It's still a worthy read, however. There's the brillance of the Mackintosh writing here in place and time. My greatest wish is for a return to her uncanny ability to hold her finger on the pulse of her characters, once more, in her next offering. No reader can resist the vicarious experience of another's heartbeat from slow and steady to rapid and pounding.

Profile Image for Karen.
593 reviews1,197 followers
February 25, 2017
So this book wasn't great but kept me turning pages and entertained. When I got towards the part to reveal who was behind this mess, the reason just didn't seem realistic at all. This was good on showing police procedure, and I did really like Kelly, the woman cop.
Profile Image for *TANYA*.
1,002 reviews313 followers
March 20, 2017
I wanted to be "WOWED" by this book, but unfortunately I wasn't. Good storyline, good writing yet it felt forced and a little stale.
Profile Image for Sean Peters.
677 reviews119 followers
July 7, 2016
Thank you to Net Galley, the publishers and to Clare the author for an ARC copy for review.

Firstly, I loved Clare's first book a fantastic first novel, the second keeps to the same standard.

A powerful, chilling, gripping tense thriller that keeps you guessing all the way.

When Zoe Walker sees her photo in the classifieds section of a London newspaper, she is determined to find out why it's there. There's no explanation: just a website, a grainy image and a phone number. She takes it home to her family, who are convinced it's just someone who looks like Zoe. But the next day the advert shows a photo of a different woman, and another the day after that.

Is it a mistake? A coincidence? Or is someone keeping track of every move they make . . .

I See You is an edge-of-your-seat, page-turning psychological thriller from one of the most exciting and successful British debut talents of 2015!

Frightening that this could be so easily be true!

Very powerful story, chilling, and gripping, like her debut author a book so powerful it stays in your head, are you being watched?

Clare has done such a good job to keep up her high, no excellent standard of her first book, now cannot wait for her next book. Quickly becoming one of Britain's great authors.

This book grips you to the very last page, great characters enjoyed Zoe character but also Kelly.

Highly recommended and a five star from me.
325 reviews302 followers
February 16, 2017
Routine is comforting to you. It’s familiar, reassuring. Routine makes you feel safe. Routine will kill you.

A new thriller from the author of the bestseller I Let You Go. What would you do if you discovered a photo of yourself being used to advertise a business that you'd never heard of? Zoe is flipping through the newspaper during her evening commute when she spots a photo of herself in the classifieds section. It's part of an ad for FindtheOne.com, a service she never signed up for. Zoe's family assures her the photo is of someone who only vaguely resembles her. They try to convince her that there's nothing to worry about, but she can't shake the nagging feeling that something is wrong. She finds similar ads in other issues of the newspaper, each featuring a different woman. She's shocked to recognize a couple of the women as victims of local crimes. Is it a coincidence or could she be next?

I see you. But you don’t see me. You’re engrossed in your book; a paperback cover with a girl in a red dress. I can’t see the title but it doesn’t matter; they’re all the same. If it isn’t boy meets girl, it’s boy stalks girl. Boy kills girl. The irony isn’t lost on me.

The story alternates between Zoe Walker's personal life (first person) and PC Kelly Swift's investigation (third person), with occasional interludes from a potential stalker (second person).

• Zoe is a single mom who lives with her devoted boyfriend and her two adult children. Her daughter is an aspiring actress and her son's life is finally back on track after some youthful indiscretions. Zoe is dull, but we spend the most time with her character. Her rationalization of her ex-husband's past behavior and her ill-advised antics annoyed me. There's a lot of focus on her personal problems. While the lack of action in the first half did make me question whether Zoe's paranoia was warranted, the focus on the banalities of her domestic life made the story feel slow-paced.

• Kelly takes an interest in the classified ads after Zoe alerts her to a possible connection to the case she's been working on. Finding a connection between the classified ads and other crimes could help her redeem herself. Four years ago, she was demoted from the Sexual Offenses Team to the Neighborhood Policing Team. I loved Kelly's passion for her profession and her protectiveness of her twin sister. She has a victim-focused approach to police work, but she also has issues getting too close to her cases. I was rooting for her! I wish Zoe and Kelly interacted more, because I would have liked to spend more time with her.

• The stalker's sections are short, but unnerving. I love how Mackintosh writes sociopaths. It puts me on edge!

I wanted reassurance. I wanted to be told I was overreacting; paranoid; delusional. I wanted false promises and glasses-half-full. A few days ago I worried the police weren’t taking me seriously; now I’m worried because they are.

The creepiest parts take place in the claustrophobic London Underground. We never know who might be lurking around the corner, watching our every move, and waiting for the right moment to strike. The crowds and cameras in the tunnels lulled Zoe into complacency. There's a false sense of security because there are so many potential witnesses, but everyone is caught up in their own lives and gadgets, oblivious to the world around them. The popularity of social media adds extra concerns. How much of the information we voluntarily publicize can be used against us? There's also an important lesson about being vigilant and trusting your instincts. There are a few instances where women’s concerns are dismissed as paranoia or overreacting. They're asked to ignore the clear evidence in front of them. This story shows how easy it can be to dismiss our own fears, either because of outside pressure or our own desire to feel safe. On the investigative side, Kelly has to question her approach towards victims. Is a victim under any obligation to assist the investigation? Should a victim be pressured to testify against their will?

“Offenders, coppers, witnesses, victims … there’s one common thread running through them all, Kelly, and it’s that no two people are the same. Every victim deals differently with what’s happened to them; some are hell-bent on revenge, others want justice, some are looking for closure, and some”—he looked her straight in the eye—“some just want to move on.”

I See You uses an exaggerated situation to remind us of the risks we might encounter in our everyday lives. The paranoia and anxiety increases as Zoe goes from being unsure if she has anything to worry about to feeling hunted. It's an unsettling reminder to stay alert, trust your intuition, and be aware of your surroundings. Whether you like this one will depend on what you want out of your thrillers. My feelings for I See You are similar to my feelings for David Bell's Since You Went Away. I tend to prefer investigations or sociopaths over the parenting of teenagers, but there are always exceptions! This book was entertaining and I suspected almost everyone at one point, but I didn't feel like I was at the center of the action.

I received this book for free from Netgalley & Berkley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The publication date is February 21, 2017.
Profile Image for Lindsay L.
679 reviews1,324 followers
April 1, 2017
3.5 stars. That final ending really took me by surprise! By far, it was the best part of the story and made me add another half star to my rating. In my opinion, this novel was not as good as the author's debut, 'I Let You Go'.

This book started off strong until about the halfway point when it started to get repetitive and lost its thrilling edge. The story focuses on the idea of being watched - not just a simple stalker situation, but an entire system of technology and surveillance watching your every move. It is a terrifying concept and had me feeling tense for the first half of the novel. I really liked the main character, Zoe, and felt empathy for her situation, however, there were a few circumstances where it seemed like she took unnecessary risks and was slightly unrealistic for me. I felt the 'guilty party' was a bit over-the-top and their motivation was somewhat far-fetched, but after reading that last twist on the final page, the shock factor went up for me and things seemed to fall into place a little better.

This book really made me 'think' and analyze my life and the idea of being watched. The 'dating business' that is introduced within this story horrifies me. Could this really happen? It's one of those books that makes you worry that it could be happening in your own life. Scary!! I'll be checking over my shoulder in public for the next while.......
Profile Image for Dana Kenedy (Dana and the Books).
212 reviews1,012 followers
February 10, 2017
3.5/5 - This review can also be found on my blog, Dana and the Books

Who's the bad guy? That's the question on everyone's mind when flipping through thrillers. Sometimes, the answer is so painfully obvious it's embarrassing, and other times you're guessing until the final word. Thankfully, I See You fell into the latter. I was 100% convinced it was Person X and I don't think I've ever been happier to have been wrong.

I See You is a novel you can breeze through easily in an afternoon. The first chapters were a bit on the rough side with too many unnecessary tangents from main character Zoe's point of view. However, that may have been intentional. Zoe wasn't supposed to be exciting. She was supposed to be a mundane, dull, average woman going about her day-to-day life. It was when Zoe got thrust out of her comfortable world into a whirlwind of panic that the story began to shine.

We get introduced to Kelly, the police officer investigating Zoe's case, and she steals the story. In fact, I wish we had a few extra chapters with Kelly as the focus as she felt a much stronger character than Zoe; Kelly's chapters had a bit more substance and mystery. She was a tough character with a complicated past that seeped into her present.

I'm not a fan of dual-POVs where the characters aren't narrated in the same POV—Zoe's chapters were in first person and Kelly's in third person. For me, I would have enjoyed the story more if both characters were in third person. Zoe's internal thinkings slowed the book down, making it a bit monotonous in a few areas where the tension could have been ramped up.

However, with that said, the tension is fantastic! It built up without me noticing, and I had to take a small break when when my knuckles turned white from clutching my book too hard. After a few cups of much needed tea, I finished the book in one go for a superb finale!

Maybe you're all better at guessing who culprits are, but I'm SO happy I didn't figure it out. That killer twist in the last chapter made it all worthwhile.

Want some thrills in your life? Pick up a copy:  (Book Depository / Amazon US / Amazon Canada / Amazon UK)

Thanks so much to Berkley Publishing for sending over a copy!

Profile Image for Melisa.
324 reviews516 followers
October 26, 2016
Here's the thing about this book: it is a very strong thriller on its own, however I had such high expectations after reading Mackintosh's I Let You Go, I can't begin to compare. I Let You Go ripped my heart out and stomped it into a million pieces. While still a great book, I did not get anywhere near that dramatic reaction from this one. So my rating is skewed a bit due to my personal experience.

Clare Mackintosh is an extremely talented writer, she has crafted a fast-paced, well-developed plot. This felt more like a police procedural rather than a thriller at times, but both aspects of the plot are extremely well-researched and thought out.

While the reader is constantly second guessing every character, I did in the end, figure out the culprit, but then...BAM. In true Clare Mackintosh style she twists everything you thought was true and makes you look at everything in a different light.

I'm giving this one 3.5 stars rounded up to 4 because I loved the writing and I couldn't put it down.

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

You can also find this review on my blog at The Book Collective.
Profile Image for Liz Barnsley.
3,471 reviews1,009 followers
July 17, 2016
I See You was really really good – SO addictive, twisty turny excellence. If you read “I Let You Go” and loved it but worry that Ms Mackintosh won’t be able to repeat that level of book fun then stop worrying now. Read this. Although perhaps not just before setting off on a trip around the underground. Glancing suspiciously round at fellow travellers in case they are watching you just makes you in yourself look rather suspicious. This may become a whole thing…

So Zoe sees herself in a newspaper ad. A rather suggestive one. Those around her, including the police, dismiss it as coincidence. But then other women appear and the coincidences pile up and we are off to the races…

The concept behind “I See You” was brilliantly imaginative but I can’t really talk about that because otherwise I’ll spoil it and we can’t have that. As with her first novel Clare Mackintosh manages to write a banging good psychological thriller that not only digs deep into some emotive character study but also keeps you on the edge of the seat, wondering what will happen and being surprised quite often by what does…

The sounds of the underground echo through this one as an anchor, for any Londoners it will be a joy, you’ll be able to see things unfold in the minds eye – and to anyone who does not know London that well, has never experienced the joys (??) of that particular system you’ll feel like you know it well. I loved this aspect of it, but again thats all you get you’ll just have to read it.

Several viewpoints tell the story, the narrative is so well flowing and immersive you’ll be in it all the way – leading into a hold your breath and pray finale where everything comes together in a great big glorious reading rush.

Will you be surprised? Probably. Will you be delighted? Almost definitely. Do I recommend this novel? Yes absolutely. Loved it. Read it in two gulping sittings.

Ticked all the boxes. Whatever comes next I’ll be first in line.
Profile Image for Barbara.
1,393 reviews4,902 followers
November 9, 2021

Like thousands of city residents, fortyish Zoe Walker commutes to work every day on the London Underground - contending with the noise, jostling, and strangers packed too close. One day, while perusing the 'London Gazette' on the train, Zoe is startled to see a picture of herself.

There, among ads for escort services and dating sites, is her photo - associated with an ad for 'FINDTHEONE.com.' When Zoe tries the ad's phone number and web address, the number doesn't work and the site requires an unknown password.

When she gets home, Zoe shares her discovery with her live-in boyfriend Simon and her children, 22-year-old Justin and 19-year-old Katie.

They're skeptical that the Gazette photo is actually Zoe, and downplay her concerns. Nevertheless, Zoe continues to check the ad regularly - noting that it features a different female's photo every day. Zoe soon realizes that the women in the photos seem to be the targets of crimes, such as stolen keys and a break-in.

Zoe brings this to the attention of Police Constable Kelly Swift, a disgraced/demoted detective who's now assigned to policing the Underground.

Kelly badly wants to redeem herself, and - and when one of the 'photo women' is murdered - manages to get herself seconded to the Murder Investigation Team (MIT). With Kelly's help the MIT discovers that one of the FINDTHEONE' women was raped, and others were crime victims as well.

As for Zoe, she notices that a well-dressed gent seems to be stalking her on the Underground. Moreover, when Zoe almost 'falls' onto the tracks, the man pulls her back.....and asks for a date. Zoe becomes increasingly paranoid, fearing that various commuters are ogling and chasing her.

On top of that, Zoe has personal concerns. Zoe's son Justin, a computer nerd who works in a coffee shop - tends to sponge off his mother;

Zoe's daughter Katie, an aspiring actress, is dating a handsome, older director who seems shady;

and Zoe's boyfriend Simon has been grouchy lately, and resentful of her ex-husband (Justin and Katie's dad).

Zoe's only moments of relaxation seem to be with her friend and neighbor Melissa, who's always good for a conversation and a cuppa.

Meanwhile, the MIT is making progress with their inquiries, and Kelly advises Zoe to be super careful....and to alter her travel habits. Interspersed with the actual events in the story are creepy observations from the 'perp', explaining the sinister behavior.

Events in the book escalate to a finale that reveals all, and there are some twists and surprises.



Overall, I enjoyed the novel. The premise of the story, that our 'personal information' is too public, is very relevant to modern times. And the main characters are fleshed out and interesting. On the downside, the middle of the story moves rather slowly, but this is a minor quibble.

The book is entertaining, and I'd recommend it to fans of thrillers.

You can follow my reviews at https://reviewsbybarbsaffer.blogspot....
Profile Image for Christine.
831 reviews150 followers
August 17, 2016
‘I Let You Go’ was a huge success for new author Clare Mackintosh. It was truly excellent and highly original. I was expecting great things from her with ‘I See You’. There has been a lot of buzz about it all over the place…

The story itself is set in London, with the London Underground featuring prominently. We follow an average forty year old woman, a commuter living in London with her family. Think girl on an underground train. She finds what looks like HER picture, in the sleazy classified section of a newspaper. There are links to a website and a phone number. Zoe contacts the police, but is not really taken seriously. Zoe keeps an eye on the classified section of the newspaper and starts to see a pattern emerging. Soon it is clear. Someone is targeting passengers on the Underground for their own sinister pleasure and gain. Only Kelly, who works with the British Transport Police, seems willing to listen to Zoe.

The highlight of ‘I See You’ was its atmospheric portrayal of the London Underground. Mackintosh really captures the feeling of claustrophobia and of bodies packed tightly together, in the heat. I shuddered at the description and I don’t really mind the Underground. I was impressed too, with the descriptions of the police operations in the Underground and above. I wanted more of that.

Overall I found this to be pretty average for a psychological crime read. Not what I was expecting AT ALL, from the author of ‘I Let You Go’.

We get bombarded with too many details about Zoe’s dreary domestic life, her work and her daily traumas. It slowed down everything, to a snail’s pace. Zoe wasn’t engaging enough to appeal to me. Although I enjoyed some of the scenes in the Underground, where she was wary and fearful. She mostly behaved like she was forty going on sixty. I craved action and tension. This was a great idea; a concept of high drama in the Underground, with murder and danger thrown in. Stalking with technology, technology working against us! Evil in our midst. The problem was that all felt contrived and unsatisfactory, with little to impress a seasoned reader of crime. I wanted to believe in it all. I just couldn’t. Kelly was the stronger, more believable character. It is a pity, we did not get her as the main focus of the story.

Overall, this was a massive disappointment to me. I think it might appeal more, if you haven’t read ‘I Let You Go’ and go into this without any expectations. I feel it is a very average psychological drama, that fails to deliver anything extra-ordinary. See what you make of it, for yourselves!
Profile Image for Kendall.
644 reviews653 followers
March 3, 2017
4.5/5 for me. I do have to say I was definitely hesitant on reading this one.. considering how much I loved her debut novel. I was a little concerned since I kept seeing 2 and 3 stars from everyone on Goodreads for this one BUT I am SO glad that I decided to read this one!!

I really enjoyed this! I wouldn't say I liked her debut novel better this one is just a very different storyline and plot from her first one. They are both equally excellent but in different ways (if that makes sense haha).

Claire Mackintosh is extremely talented and she KNOWS how to grab you and leave you wanting more. Honestly, I was pretty freaked out by this novel. I legit had anxiety with thinking about the commuters being stalked going to and from their every day lives. That scares the hell out of me actually...... just thinking about being stalked and watched when you're merping around doing your thing...... YIKES

I loved PC Kelly Swift's character in this one and liked how she was very empathetic and connected to her cases especially with Zoe and her family.

I'll just say this... you think you know someone....but DAMN............ and DAMN...... (I watch the ID channel... Investigation Discovery which is basically a crime/thriller tv channel for those of you that don't know.... and this really reminded me of something that you would see on there).

AND Claire you delivered my lovely friend.... with THAT twist. That's the best part... well played well played!

You have made me a definite fan of your writing and I look forward to the next novel that comes out!!! :)
Profile Image for Brenda.
725 reviews146 followers
November 21, 2016
I loved Clare Mackintosh's debut, I Let You Go, and was eager to read this one. The premise is interesting. Someone set up a website describing women and their routines who used the trains on a regular basis. Men can purchase women's profiles and use them to "accidentally" meet to begin a relationship, or for other nefarious purposes. The women have no idea they are being targeted, followed, and stalked.

There were times I wanted to whack the main character, Zoe, upside the head. She sometimes unintentionally said mean things to her young adult children, lived with a man yet relied on her ex too often, and seemed to be sinking into deep paranoia. There were also times she did the right thing, like calling the cops, who were smart, dependable, and efficient. There were several characters in Zoe's life who I didn't trust.

The twists and turns were more like wiggles and curves, and the suspense was not severe. The pace picked up a bit near the end. All in all, it was a good book, but I liked the author's debut more. I look forward to seeing what Clare Mackintosh has in store for her next book.
Profile Image for Theresa.
232 reviews142 followers
February 12, 2017
Thank you Berkley Publishing for sending me a free ARC of, "I See You" by Clare Mackintosh, in exchange for an honest review.

"I See You" is a psychological thriller about a woman (Zoe Walker) in her early 40's who sees her picture in a classified ad (for escorting services) in the back of a newspaper, during her commute home from work. Zoe is stunned and freaked out since she was no idea who or what placed the ad and used her picture without her knowledge. Zoe learns later on that other women who've also had their pictures stolen for these ads, have recently become victims of violent crimes including: theft, rape, and even murder. Obviously Zoe is worried something might happen to her. She becomes paranoid and obsessed in uncovering the truth/reasons behinds these ads.

Plot-wise, this story is intriguing, but I had major problems with the writing and the character development. Mackintosh's writing style felt flat and awkward to me. I caught myself rolling my eyes, especially when it came to reading Zoe's chapters. There is another character that is introduced in Chapter 2, Kelly Swift, an emotionally troubled but dedicated cop. I found myself more drawn to Kelly's point-of-view. Kelly seemed like a more multi-dimensional character, and I liked reading about her conflicting relationship with her twin sister, Lexi, who survived a traumatic event in College. Kelly is wrestling with her own demons, (suspended for roughing up an inmate). I liked that she wasn't cookie-cutter. She's feisty but sensitive.

As for Zoe, I hate to say this but I found her highly annoying. The way Mackintosh wrote Zoe was not believable. The character is not fleshed-out enough for me. Zoe lacked self-awareness and was not the sharpest tool in the shed. She was just embarrassing and I did not root for her at all. I also didn't like Zoe's live-in boyfriend, Simon, or her conceited, aspiring actress daughter, Katie. Zoe lacked depth, plain and simple. The pacing of the book is rather slow. Took me a good 200 pages for the story to pick up steam. Also, some of the British slang was confusing. I was like, huh???

I must say what did work for me were the plot twists. I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome of this novel (not what I was expecting). I thought it was clever and snarky as hell. I loved the "mystery person" narrative which was written in italics. It added a layer of creepiness that I didn't feel with the alternating chapters of Zoe and Kelly. I SO WANTED TO ENJOY THIS BOOK MORE! Overall, the plot gets an A for effort, but a C for execution. It's a mixed bag for me. Damn it!
Profile Image for Mary.
553 reviews11 followers
July 14, 2017
Dear reader,

You leave your house to go up work at exactly the same time each day, you sit on the same seat,in the same carriage,on the tube,walk the same path and arrive safely at your destination at the same time.

Such routine is rarely commented on,neither is the number of inconsequential people you pass by,each preoccupied with their own agenda. Hell bent on getting to your destination you notice nothing or no one.

And if someone 'accidentally' bumped into you on any given day,struck up a seemingly innocent conversation the next day you happened to meet and ask if you'd like to perhaps go for dinner or a drink,you'd put such meetings down to happenstance,to pure coincidence,nothing more. Perhaps view it as Fate finally intervening and placing this stranger in your path ?

And yes,stranger things have happened.
But what if your meeting was no accident?What if they were privy to your exact routine,watched you from afar and planned the whole 'accidental' meeting?
What if the stranger had more nefarious plans in mind than a drink?What if he had a thirst and hunger for darker games?

And what if a series of different women's photos appeared in a local paper advertising a website only for them to suddenly become the victims of burglary,assault and other more serious crimes? What,if you featured in one of them?

Yes,dear reader,such are the thoughts that will slip through your mind as you read this compelling tale.

This was a very interesting and intriguing story and while not as psychologically taut or dark as her previous book,Ms Macintosh kept me hooked in my curiosity to find out 'who dun it'.

Profile Image for Diana | Book of Secrets.
798 reviews595 followers
July 6, 2017
Clare Mackintosh’s debut novel I LET YOU GO was one of my favorite books last year, so I was excited to read her follow up. I SEE YOU is an intriguing blend of psychological thriller and police procedural told from different POVs in alternating chapters.

The story grabbed my attention right away. When Zoe sees her photo advertising a mysterious website, she is understandably concerned. Her concern turns to panic when she realizes other women whose photos have appeared in the same ad have become victims of terrible crimes. Who is behind this awful site, and is she the next victim?

I flew through this book quickly. The chapters alternated between Zoe, Kelly (a cop investigating the case), and a mysterious third person. The author did a great job of building suspense by ending chapters with mini cliff hangers. I had to cheat several times and peek ahead.

The premise of this book was an interesting and unsettling concept, especially in the social media age, though maybe not entirely plausible. While I was quite surprised to learn who was behind the website, I was a bit let down at the reasoning behind it. Overall, though, I enjoyed the book, and it kept me guessing about who the baddie was until the end.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
December 22, 2017
****4 STARS****

Find this review and more at www.prettymessreading.com

I did it and I loved it!

I'm am establishing a HUGE liking for suspense novels!

Why have I been denying myself the satisfaction of stories such as I See You.

I See You made me think really hard about the society that we live in and how our images are out there for the world to see and still. People become obsessed others and track them via the internet or in person. Quite scary when you think about it. I See You makes you think about it.

Zoe is just your everyday girl - not girl, actually. She's a woman who finds herself in the personal ads. The scary thing is - she didn't put it there. Zoe tries to put this behind her wants to believe it is an accident. After she discovers someone else who's photo was in the same paper as her has been murdered, she realizes she may be in danger as well.

Kelly, a local cop, becomes essential to Zoe's safety as she is the only other person who believes that Zoe may be in danger. Kelly's partner, Nick, also becomes a big part of the storyline and really gives a balance to the story.

The story is a slow build but it is worth it. The really picks up and the angst and eagerness to find out who, what, when, where, and how everything unfolds. I couldn't put the book down.

Being predictable can sometimes be disaster when technology makes it so easy to find someone. That's only one of the many things that stuck with me afterwards.

The story was creepy, frightening, shudder some and more, in the best way.

That ending. . .WOW!

I did the romance wee bit so I'm hoping i can find a suspense novel with some love here and there.

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Profile Image for Megan Hoffman.
174 reviews289 followers
March 26, 2018
I loved Clare Mackintosh's first book and for some reason, two books later I hadn't picked up another. I have no good reason and at this point, I'm kicking myself over it because this one was really great.

To me, what stands out about this book was the premise - there's a website that lists women's routes...now, what someone does with knowledge of where someone will be + when is entirely up to them. When these women begin to show up as victims of violent crimes, who's at fault?

It took me a little while to get into, yes, as I found the main character (Zoe) to be...less than endearing. If anything, I worried that I'd not like the book simply because I found her to be overly whiney. Thankfully, that clears up as you really get into the intricacies of what's going on.

It's creepy, it's not what I expected, and it's fantastic for it.

Should you buy it?: Yes, i recommend picking this one up if it's something you're interested in. I found it on sale since her newest novel just hit shelves so maybe you'll get lucky! It's well worth it.

April 24, 2022
“I See You” is the second book by Clare Mackintosh following her breakout debut “I Let You Go” which I thoroughly enjoyed. This one, not so much.

The premise for this novel is basically the idea of cyber stalking, how much we are all exposed by the things we post on the internet and other social media platforms. We are becoming accustomed to revealing lots of our data on the web, assuming that it is protected. However tech savvy computer types can usually access most data. Just reading the news daily we know that the government, credit card hackers, etc. are becoming increasingly better at breaking code even at what was once thought to be deeply embedded software.

Zoe Walker is a victim of routine, as so many of us are, taking the same commute daily to and from work. She sees a photo in the classified section of a newspaper while on the train and recognizes the picture to be her own, even though she can’t place exactly when it was taken. As the novel proceeds Zoe is increasingly sure that she is in harm’s way and reports her suspicions to the police and her family and friends. Here begins my disbelief in the character. Although she suspects danger, she doesn’t do anything to change her routine or protect herself.
Zoe hasn’t had the easiest start with relationships, having been married and divorced with two teenaged children and now living with Simon, a man whom she has brought in to live with her and her and her kids. Considering all that she has gone through she still comes across to me as being naive and trusting.

Enter Kelly, a detective struggling to clear her name from a previous incident with a suspect in which she lost control and lashed out. She gets the call from Zoe and wants in on this case. She is my favorite character because she seems the most genuine. She learns from her mistakes, seems to be whip smart and cares about the victims. As the case progresses it is her quick thinking and willingness to think outside the box and put her reputation on the line to help Zoe that resolves the case. Upon researching there are links to the photos and women who have reported theft, being followed and even a murder. At this point Kelly’s supervisor is beginning to see the light and provides backup for Kelly’s investigation.

There is, of course, a whole cast of characters. Melissa, Zoe’s next door neighbor and best friend whom she has relied upon since the kids were little. Zoe’s kids, Katie a 19 year old with acting aspirations but not a lot of common sense and Justin, Katie’s older sibling who seems to have turned the corner after being in some trouble as a younger teen. Matt is Zoe’s ex-husband who stays very involved with his kids and seems to be the good one that got away.

My take on a psychological thriller is always that it has to be believable for me to get that tense, edge of your seat, quickly turning pages feeling. There should also be a sociopath controlling the reigns somewhere along the line. This book fell short for me because of the characters. I felt Zoe to be rather a weak character who has little control over what her kids do or say even though they are living under her roof. Having raised four daughters I think I have some good experience with teens. Simon was mushy sweet and shallow I couldn’t see how he could ever be accepted in this teenaged household nor why he would choose to be involved with Zoe and all of her emotional baggage.

I liked the epilogue but again found it unbelievable, just too much evil to be present in one person’s life among the people that she loves and trusts.

I am in the minority on this one so give it a whirl and see what you all think, I’ll be interested to read following reviews.

I received an ARC of this novel from the publisher and NetGalley, thank you.
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