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All children have imaginary friends, Georgina tells herself. It’s perfectly normal, and they all grow out of it in the end. But when her seven-year-old son, Cody, tells her about New Granny, the new friend he’s met in the park, Georgina is instantly suspicious. Something—call it maternal instinct—tells her he isn’t making it up. But maybe Georgina is losing her mind. It wou All children have imaginary friends, Georgina tells herself. It’s perfectly normal, and they all grow out of it in the end. But when her seven-year-old son, Cody, tells her about New Granny, the new friend he’s met in the park, Georgina is instantly suspicious. Something—call it maternal instinct—tells her he isn’t making it up. But maybe Georgina is losing her mind. It wouldn’t be the first time, after all. And with her own mother’s recent death leaving her bereft and trying to cope with life as a busy working mom, it’s no wonder she’s feeling paranoid that Cody has invented a “New Granny” to replace his beloved grandmother. Her husband, Bren, becomes the voice of reason, assuring Georgina that it’s just a game, the product of their son’s overactive imagination. But what if Cody’s imaginary friend is not so imaginary after all?


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All children have imaginary friends, Georgina tells herself. It’s perfectly normal, and they all grow out of it in the end. But when her seven-year-old son, Cody, tells her about New Granny, the new friend he’s met in the park, Georgina is instantly suspicious. Something—call it maternal instinct—tells her he isn’t making it up. But maybe Georgina is losing her mind. It wou All children have imaginary friends, Georgina tells herself. It’s perfectly normal, and they all grow out of it in the end. But when her seven-year-old son, Cody, tells her about New Granny, the new friend he’s met in the park, Georgina is instantly suspicious. Something—call it maternal instinct—tells her he isn’t making it up. But maybe Georgina is losing her mind. It wouldn’t be the first time, after all. And with her own mother’s recent death leaving her bereft and trying to cope with life as a busy working mom, it’s no wonder she’s feeling paranoid that Cody has invented a “New Granny” to replace his beloved grandmother. Her husband, Bren, becomes the voice of reason, assuring Georgina that it’s just a game, the product of their son’s overactive imagination. But what if Cody’s imaginary friend is not so imaginary after all?

30 review for The Woman Outside My Door

  1. 4 out of 5

    Meredith ( on Semi-Hiatus until February)

    Cleverly Plotted 3.5 stars The Woman Outside My Door is a psychological thriller about a mother who is concerned about her son’s new imaginary friend, “New Granny.” Is her son in danger, or is she losing her grasp on reality? When Georgina’s 7-year-old son starts talking about his new imaginary friend, “New Granny,” she begins to worry. While Georgina expresses her concerns and begins to grow fearful for Cody’s safety, those around her question her behavior. Something sinister is going on, and all Cleverly Plotted 3.5 stars The Woman Outside My Door is a psychological thriller about a mother who is concerned about her son’s new imaginary friend, “New Granny.” Is her son in danger, or is she losing her grasp on reality? When Georgina’s 7-year-old son starts talking about his new imaginary friend, “New Granny,” she begins to worry. While Georgina expresses her concerns and begins to grow fearful for Cody’s safety, those around her question her behavior. Something sinister is going on, and all is not what it seems. Told from Georgina’s POV, she is an unreliable narrator. This book had me constantly questioning if she was losing her mind or just dumb and gullible. The first half of the book had me constantly rolling my eyes at her. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that I was wrong about Georgina’s character; she is actually much smarter than she seems! This is a quick, easy read. It’s packed with tension and kept me turning the pages. The writing is a bit repetitive, and at times, a little gimmicky. I also thought that everything ends a little too neatly. However, this is a solid debut thriller, and I look forward to reading more by Rachel Ryan in the future. I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jayme

    I couldn’t resist the captivating cover and an invitation from the Publisher to read this DEBUT novel from Irish author Rachel Ryan and I am so glad I did! She is a new voice in the DOMESTIC SUSPENSE genre, who I will be keeping my eye on. Seven year old, Cody has made a new friend in the park, and he calls her “NEW GRANNY”. “Chocolate is the prize for boys who win the game” His mom Georgina is NOT convinced that she is just an imaginary friend, invented because he is mourning the recent loss of hi I couldn’t resist the captivating cover and an invitation from the Publisher to read this DEBUT novel from Irish author Rachel Ryan and I am so glad I did! She is a new voice in the DOMESTIC SUSPENSE genre, who I will be keeping my eye on. Seven year old, Cody has made a new friend in the park, and he calls her “NEW GRANNY”. “Chocolate is the prize for boys who win the game” His mom Georgina is NOT convinced that she is just an imaginary friend, invented because he is mourning the recent loss of his grandmother Rose. Call it MOTHER’s INTUITION. But, Dad, Bren thinks it’s a perfectly normal way for a young boy to cope and that Georgina is overreacting. His lack of support is not helping their already troubled marriage. HAS SOMEONE followed Georgina home? SOMEONE been watching the house? SOMEONE been looking in the window? SOMEONE been at the door? Or is Georgina the one with the overactive imagination? The words and behavior of Bren and each of the neighbors will be questioned until the truth is revealed. This book has been called perfect for fans of Lisa Jewell, and while the characters are not as quirky, I do think that her fans WILL also enjoy the engaging style and unrelenting suspense of this author’s work as well. I know that I did! AVAILABLE NOW!! Thank you to the Publisher for my gifted copy! It was a pleasure to provide a candid review!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kat

    What would you do if your 7-year old child walked up to you in the park with a lollipop in their mouth that you didn’t give them? Furthermore, when asked, they tell you an old lady in the bushes who says she wants to be their “New Granny” gave it to them? Eeek! It’s the stuff of parents’ nightmares, and that’s the creepy, unnerving scenario that confronts our protagonist, Georgina when the story opens. It definitely pulled me right in and set my hopes high for the rest of the book. This is a very What would you do if your 7-year old child walked up to you in the park with a lollipop in their mouth that you didn’t give them? Furthermore, when asked, they tell you an old lady in the bushes who says she wants to be their “New Granny” gave it to them? Eeek! It’s the stuff of parents’ nightmares, and that’s the creepy, unnerving scenario that confronts our protagonist, Georgina when the story opens. It definitely pulled me right in and set my hopes high for the rest of the book. This is a very respectable debut effort by Irish author Rachel Ryan, and I think she’s got a lot of the right ideas and writing skill to keep writing good books for years to come. That said, there are some things I thought could have been better. Let’s start with the good stuff first though: It’s a great premise. Georgina has recently lost her mother, Rose, and her son, Cody, is missing his grandmother. Is he creating an imaginary “New Granny” to help his grief over losing her? Her husband, Bren, thinks so, and he’s quick to dismiss Georgina’s concerns as overreacting or mental instability, which she’d previously experienced after Cody’s birth. Is she losing her mind again? It’s the classic unreliable narrator trope. It has a solid plot. Yes, some of it may be a little far-fetched, but at least it’s in the realm of possibility, which is more than I can say for many thrillers. I can’t say much without spoilers, but it highlights a very real and sad aspect of Ireland’s history, where the story is set, which allows insight and sympathy for the characters involved and their motivations. It has tight, short chapters. Most chapters are 3-5 pages, so the story moves along quickly, which keeps the atmosphere of suspense going nicely. Where it fell a little short for me: An unnecessary secondary storyline. The story of Bren’s philandering never felt necessary or fully integrated into the plot and pulled attention away from the best part of the story which was “New Granny”. After that strong opening, it felt like the story shifted for awhile to Bren and Georgina’s relationship, and frankly it was pretty boring. I wanted more “New Granny” creepiness and less of their marital issues. The ending was good, but could’ve been great. It had a measure of excitement and peril, but ultimately it felt a little rushed. After building up this creepy mysterious “New Granny” the whole book, I would’ve liked more … something! It’s truly a solid effort, and I liked it overall. I’ll be interested to see what Rachel Ryan writes in the future! ★★★ ½ (rounded to 4)

  4. 4 out of 5

    Debra

    3.5 stars A Child with an imaginary friend...Imagine that! But what if you have doubts, what if there is something a little off about your child's imaginary friend, what if "New Granny" is real, what if???? Seven-year-old Cody has been having conversations and receiving gifts from his "New Granny". Is his imaginary Granny the result of his young mind attempting to cope with the recent death of his grandmother? Or is someone really talking to Cody and giving him treats? Georgina is worried for her so 3.5 stars A Child with an imaginary friend...Imagine that! But what if you have doubts, what if there is something a little off about your child's imaginary friend, what if "New Granny" is real, what if???? Seven-year-old Cody has been having conversations and receiving gifts from his "New Granny". Is his imaginary Granny the result of his young mind attempting to cope with the recent death of his grandmother? Or is someone really talking to Cody and giving him treats? Georgina is worried for her son. She KNOWS that New Granny is real, even if her husband, Bren does not believe her. Bren believes their son when he says he made New Granny up. Grieving the loss of her mother, Georgina is also reeling from Bren's confession. But what if she is wrong? What if New Granny is really an imaginary friend? What if???? You will have to read to find out! This proved to be fast read which had me guessing, incorrectly, as to what was going on. My initial theory was so far off base and I do not think anyone will see the revelation coming. I thought the author did a great job showing Georgina's fear and concern for her son. This was an enjoyable book which shows a woman coping with grief, while balancing work, family life and studying. When her son begins talking to his imaginary friend, we see her question many things as those in her life begin to question her sanity. There are a couple of subplots going on in this book as well, I felt many where cleverly used to throw the reader off and to cast doubt. Entertaining, a tense whodunit which does not disappoint. Thank you to Gallery Books and NetGalley who provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All the thoughts and opinions are my own.

  5. 4 out of 5

    PamG

    THE WOMAN OUTSIDE MY DOOR is a psychological thriller and the debut novel of Rachel Ryan. From the first page to the dramatic ending, I couldn’t stop reading. Georgina is the protagonist in this unforgettable story. She and Bren have a seven year old son, Cody. When she finds that Cody has some chocolate, he tells her that New Granny gave it to him. Then she finds him talking on the phone. Is it New Granny or a school mate? Bren thinks it’s just a game where Cody is dealing with the grief of rec THE WOMAN OUTSIDE MY DOOR is a psychological thriller and the debut novel of Rachel Ryan. From the first page to the dramatic ending, I couldn’t stop reading. Georgina is the protagonist in this unforgettable story. She and Bren have a seven year old son, Cody. When she finds that Cody has some chocolate, he tells her that New Granny gave it to him. Then she finds him talking on the phone. Is it New Granny or a school mate? Bren thinks it’s just a game where Cody is dealing with the grief of recently losing his grandmother, but Georgina isn’t sure. What is real and what is her imagination? Is New Granny an imaginary friend or is something else happening? Is Cody in danger? Bren starts to question Georgina’s behavior and thinks she is being irrational. Is Georgina being paranoid? Is she having an emotional breakdown? Georgina was a flawed protagonist, lacking confidence and having trouble communicating with her family. Despite getting aggravated at her several times, I continued to root for her. Her goals were clear and her motivations seemed believable. Her character felt realistic in the sense that she is struggling with work-life balance and wants to protect her child. Many of the secondary characters enhanced the story, but they were not always likeable nor did they have the depth that I would have liked. However, the characters acted or reacted to events in a plausible and believable way. The internal and external conflicts arose out of characterization and circumstance rather than feeling contrived or forced. The stakes were extremely high and so was the tension, making this a page-turner. There were a couple of plot twists that were believable, but unexpected. Most of the subplots tied together well, but there was one that was not resolved to my satisfaction. The prose flowed well and the emotions of the characters came through vividly. One downside is that the premise did not totally avoid clichés as it related to the relationship between Georgina and Bren. Also, the revelations in the last part of the book would have benefited from a little more development. Themes include child safety, family dynamics, infidelity, secrets, lack of communication, mental health, stress, grief and much more. Overall, this was a suspenseful, chilling, unsettling and definitely somewhat creepy thriller that kept me on the edge of my seat. It had a good pace from scene to scene and had a dramatic ending that caught me by surprise. What an amazing debut novel! I’m looking forward to Ryan’s next novel. If you enjoy psychological thrillers, then I recommend you check out this one. Thanks to Gallery Books and Rachel Ryan for a digital ARC of this novel via NetGalley. This is my honest review. Opinions are mine alone and are not biased in any way. Publication date is currently set for January 05, 2021. This review was originally posted at Mystery and Suspense Magazine.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    Okay. Another limbo reading for me. Firstly I love Sandra Brown and I enjoyed most of her action packed/ romantic suspense novels. I thought this book was written under her pseudonym name Rachel Rayne. Thankfully one of my Goodreads friends corrected me. This book belongs a debut Irish author with same pseudonym name . (Yeap, I should have figured out before. My bad🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️) It dances between mystery/ psychological thriller genres but unfortunately the MCs’ dysfunctional marriage and communicat Okay. Another limbo reading for me. Firstly I love Sandra Brown and I enjoyed most of her action packed/ romantic suspense novels. I thought this book was written under her pseudonym name Rachel Rayne. Thankfully one of my Goodreads friends corrected me. This book belongs a debut Irish author with same pseudonym name . (Yeap, I should have figured out before. My bad🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️) It dances between mystery/ psychological thriller genres but unfortunately the MCs’ dysfunctional marriage and communication problems took too much place at the story and their arguments turned into something repetitive without any solution. Normally this book is about Georgina and Bren’s son Cody’s imaginary old lady friend who gives him chocolates, telling him she wants to be her new grandma. Georgina gets suspicious, searching clues as her husband Bren tells her this is only their son’s coping mechanism to deal with his grief. Georgina recently lost her mother and she has more trouble to concentrate on her own grief as she also tries to face her marriage problems. Cody acts strange, talks on the phone with his imaginary friends and all their neighbors start acting like creeps. And Georgina thinks that somebody following her with his/her car, watching their house. This mysterious parts are good but I wish there were more because the couple problems overshadowed those exciting parts. There is a pattern between marriage couple; Georgina found out her husband Bren kissed his ex at a special friends union when he was drunk. Georgina cannot move on because she cannot absorb the cheating and cannot forgive him but also she mentally hurts herself instead of confronting him. She gives him silent treatment. They argue. She finally starts talking to him. Then she finds another fact , asks her husband, he confesses, more silent treatment. They argue, more cold shoulder. It goes on and on! I thought that Georgina’s mental state may be connected to a childhood drama. That would be more logical so we can think she is inaccurate narrator and we may have suspicions about her moves. But grief and the other psychological breakdown she has gotten through for a few years back didn’t seem like proper explanation for me. She’s not delusional woman. She is just sensitive and she bottles up her feelings instead of showing her anger, resentment. This doesn’t make her mentally disturbed. Last third was so much better, action packed and the emotional angst part about couple finally ended at those part ( thankfully) And the final twist, revelations were also satisfying. I give last third of the book: four stars And I give 2.5 stars to the rest of it. Average: 3.25! It was okay reading. Definitely not bad and boring ( if you exclude couple’s lack of communication) but I was expected a little more from this brilliant author. It’s still easy, fast pacing, riveting reading and it’s still good choice for spending your time with a mysterious page turner. I recommended it to author’s fans and thriller lovers. Special thanks to NetGalley and Gallery Books for sharing this fast paced ARC with me in exchange my honest opinions. blog instagram facebook twitter

  7. 5 out of 5

    Tina

    This is a psychological thriller, and I think this is my new favorite psychological thriller. This book did not have a ton of twist and turns, but the big twist and turn at the end was so big and good. This book had me guessing who and what is going to happen the whole book. Not many thrillers does that to me anymore because I have read so many thrillers. All the characters in this book had personalist of their own, and I loved that. I think if you love psychological thrillers I think you will l This is a psychological thriller, and I think this is my new favorite psychological thriller. This book did not have a ton of twist and turns, but the big twist and turn at the end was so big and good. This book had me guessing who and what is going to happen the whole book. Not many thrillers does that to me anymore because I have read so many thrillers. All the characters in this book had personalist of their own, and I loved that. I think if you love psychological thrillers I think you will love this book. I was kindly provided an e-copy of this book by the publisher (Gallery Books) or author (Rachel Ryan) via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review about how I feel about this book, and I want to send a big Thank you to them for that. (*)

  8. 4 out of 5

    Jessica | JustReadingJess

    I really enjoyed The Woman Outside My Door. It is a mix of suspenseful thriller and personal drama. Georgina is grieving her mother and worried about her father. There is suspense throughout the book while Georgina tries to figure out if New Granny is Cody’s imaginary friend or a real person. The reader wonders throughout the book if Georgina is going crazy or if strange things are actually happening. Many of the surprises in The Woman Outside the Door were predictable but I still enjoyed figuri I really enjoyed The Woman Outside My Door. It is a mix of suspenseful thriller and personal drama. Georgina is grieving her mother and worried about her father. There is suspense throughout the book while Georgina tries to figure out if New Granny is Cody’s imaginary friend or a real person. The reader wonders throughout the book if Georgina is going crazy or if strange things are actually happening. Many of the surprises in The Woman Outside the Door were predictable but I still enjoyed figuring out what was going on. There were a few surprises I didn’t see coming. The story was interesting and all of the characters seemed questionable and untrustworthy. Thank you Gallery Books and NetGalley for The Woman Outside My Door. Full Review: https://justreadingjess.wordpress.com...

  9. 5 out of 5

    Tonya

    Thank you NetGalley and Gallery Books for my ARC. This was a fast paced thriller that I really enjoyed. Georgina’s son Cody, is visited by “New Granny.” He claims at first that she is real and gives him candy and plays games with him. He quickly changes his tune, and says it was all something he made up. Georgina is sure this person is real and dangerous. Her husband, Bren, is not so easily convinced. Georgina’s challenge to prove to Bren that she is right about this new threat was compelling an Thank you NetGalley and Gallery Books for my ARC. This was a fast paced thriller that I really enjoyed. Georgina’s son Cody, is visited by “New Granny.” He claims at first that she is real and gives him candy and plays games with him. He quickly changes his tune, and says it was all something he made up. Georgina is sure this person is real and dangerous. Her husband, Bren, is not so easily convinced. Georgina’s challenge to prove to Bren that she is right about this new threat was compelling and suspenseful. The conclusion was satisfying and surprising. I recommend this perfectly paced thriller and am looking forward to reading future books by Rachel Ryan. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  10. 5 out of 5

    Jessica | JustReadingJess

    The Woman Outside My Door by Rachel Ryan is a suspenseful thriller. Georgina’s seven year old son, Cody, met a new friend at the park he calls New Granny. Cody had imaginary friends in the past. Bren, Georgina’s husband, is confident New Granny is a new imaginary friend. Georgina and Bren are having marital problems which make it hard for Georgina to trust Bren. Georgina’s mother died recently. She is grieving and wondering if Cody is grieving by inventing a new imaginary friend. Is New Granny Co The Woman Outside My Door by Rachel Ryan is a suspenseful thriller. Georgina’s seven year old son, Cody, met a new friend at the park he calls New Granny. Cody had imaginary friends in the past. Bren, Georgina’s husband, is confident New Granny is a new imaginary friend. Georgina and Bren are having marital problems which make it hard for Georgina to trust Bren. Georgina’s mother died recently. She is grieving and wondering if Cody is grieving by inventing a new imaginary friend. Is New Granny Cody’s imaginary friend or who is Cody’s new friend? I really enjoyed The Woman Outside My Door. It is a mix of suspenseful thriller and personal drama. Georgina is grieving her mother and worried about her father. There is suspense throughout the book while Georgina tries to figure out if New Granny is Cody’s imaginary friend or a real person. The reader wonders throughout the book if Georgina is going crazy or if strange things are actually happening. Many of the surprises in The Woman Outside the Door were predictable but I still enjoyed figuring out what was going on. There were a few surprises I didn’t see coming. The story was interesting and all of the characters seemed questionable and untrustworthy. Thank you Gallery Books and NetGalley for The Woman Outside My Door.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Katie B

    This book was a solid psychological thriller, or domestic suspense novel, or whatever you want to call it. I had a fun time reading it because it held my interest from start to finish. That might seem like a minor thing but I've really been struggling with my reading concentration levels during this crazy year. I'm always happy to stumble upon a page turner like this one. Georgina's seven year old son, Cody, says he met a new friend at the park. He calls her New Granny. Hmm... Georgina's mother This book was a solid psychological thriller, or domestic suspense novel, or whatever you want to call it. I had a fun time reading it because it held my interest from start to finish. That might seem like a minor thing but I've really been struggling with my reading concentration levels during this crazy year. I'm always happy to stumble upon a page turner like this one. Georgina's seven year old son, Cody, says he met a new friend at the park. He calls her New Granny. Hmm... Georgina's mother recently passed away, did Cody make up an imaginary friend to take her place? But the more Cody talks about this New Granny, Georgina starts believing him and becomes concerned for Cody's safety as that's pretty creepy someone keeps approaching her son when she is not around. As anyone knows, a good mother will go to great lengths to protect her child. There's just something about the whole "is this person off their rocker or are they truly in danger" premise that sucks me in every time. As a reader it's like you feel protective of the characters and need to make sure they are okay so you gotta keep reading to find out. And that's what made this a fun read as the author played right into that natural curiosity I have when it comes to these types of stories. Towards the end there's a bit of a creative tangent which I sorta liked and I sorta did not like. Maybe the best way to put it is the payout isn't super satisfying but yet points should be awarded because I doubt any reader will be able to predict with 100% accuracy every single detail of how it all plays out. For me this fits my definition of weekend read in that it's not taxing on the brain and it's entertaining. An impressive debut novel and I'll be on the lookout for more books by Rachel Ryan. Thank you to Gallery Books for providing be with an advance copy! All thoughts expressed are my honest opinion.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn

    Thanks to NetGalley and Simon and Schuster for this intense psychological thriller. Rachel Ryan has crafted a gripping, mystery and shows talent in maintaining suspense, and in keeping the reader baffled about what is really going on. There is some heart-pounding, tension-filled action near the end. Georgina has had an emotional breakdown several years earlier when her mother died and she learned her husband, Bren, may have been unfaithful. There was also some postpartum depression. I felt I sho Thanks to NetGalley and Simon and Schuster for this intense psychological thriller. Rachel Ryan has crafted a gripping, mystery and shows talent in maintaining suspense, and in keeping the reader baffled about what is really going on. There is some heart-pounding, tension-filled action near the end. Georgina has had an emotional breakdown several years earlier when her mother died and she learned her husband, Bren, may have been unfaithful. There was also some postpartum depression. I felt I should have been more sympathetic to her growing instability and paranoia, but I didn't find her particularly likeable. The motives and behaviour of some of the characters did not seem reasonable to me. The author's skill in maintaining suspense kept me with the story until the end. It was a quick read with good, plain, direct writing and without embellishments. Georgina's seven-year-old son, Cody, claims he met a New Granny while playing in the park. He talks to her on the phone and receives loving messages from her. His mother fears the mysterious woman wishes Cody harm and is watching the house. She is compelled to prove that New Granny really exists and to put an end to this inappropriate connection. Her husband, Bren, is the voice of reason, saying that is not unusual for a child to have an imaginary friend and this is his way of coping with the death of his real grandmother. As Georgina's paranoia grows, Bren advises her to see a psychiatrist. She believes he may be plotting to leave her and is making it appear she is insane in order to get custody of Cody. I believe Rachel Ryan is a name to watch in her stories of family drama and psychological suspense.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Erin Clemence

    Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free, electronic ARC of this novel received in exchange for an honest review. Expected publication date: November 24, 2020 When Georgina’s mother passes away, her entire life changes. Struggling to deal with the grief, as well as working to save a failing marriage, Georgina tries to focus her energy on her young son, Cody. Georgina begins to see a dark figure watching her from the shadows, and when her son starts receiving phone calls f Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free, electronic ARC of this novel received in exchange for an honest review. Expected publication date: November 24, 2020 When Georgina’s mother passes away, her entire life changes. Struggling to deal with the grief, as well as working to save a failing marriage, Georgina tries to focus her energy on her young son, Cody. Georgina begins to see a dark figure watching her from the shadows, and when her son starts receiving phone calls from someone calling herself “Granny”, Georgina is instantly on alarm. Georgina’s husband thinks that “Granny” is simply an imaginary friend Cody created to help him deal with his real grandmother’s grief. But Georgina can’t shake the feeling that she, and her son, are being watched, even though her husband and friends continue to insist she’s simply “stressed out”. Desperate to keep her son safe, Georgina sets out to find out the truth about “Granny”, and defend her family. “The Woman Outside My Door” is a debut novel by Irish author Rachel Ryan. I was floored and blown away to find out that this psychologically twisted and suspenseful novel was a debut; Ryan writes as if she has many novels under her belt. There is a creativity to the plot, a connected flow to the story, and well-developed characters, all wrapped into a tightly-wound, suspenseful package. This novel is definitely a “who dunnit”, and although there are many possibilities, I never saw the ending coming. Although unpredictable, the ending itself was a little far-fetched and overly dramatic, but it was definitely unexpected. I thoroughly enjoyed Georgina as a character. As she struggles with her own grief, and her husband’s infidelity, she is made to feel “crazy” by the rest of the world (including her husband) for voicing her very real concerns and fears. Those in her immediate circle “swoop in to save the day”, suggesting spa days and therapists, when there is a real danger in Georgina’s life. It will hit home with most women, and I believe most mothers, whose feelings have been downplayed and whose actions have been deemed to be “overdramatic”. This was a novel that was hard to put down. I made frequent guesses as to the ending throughout the story and I was desperate to find out if I was right (I was not), and was a little disappointed when this novel came to an end. Whatever Rachel Ryan did in her past, she has found her calling as an author. Please, Ms. Ryan, give me more!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Zoe

    Tense, ominous, and clever! The Woman Outside My Door is a suspenseful, psychological thriller that introduces us to Georgina, a young wife struggling with the loss of her mother who becomes even more unhinged when her seven-year-old-son appears to have a new imaginary friend that phones him and gives him treats. The writing is crisp and edgy. The characters are vulnerable, unreliable, and distressed. And the plot unfolds subtly into an eerie tale of secrets, obsession, heartache, shame, lonelines Tense, ominous, and clever! The Woman Outside My Door is a suspenseful, psychological thriller that introduces us to Georgina, a young wife struggling with the loss of her mother who becomes even more unhinged when her seven-year-old-son appears to have a new imaginary friend that phones him and gives him treats. The writing is crisp and edgy. The characters are vulnerable, unreliable, and distressed. And the plot unfolds subtly into an eerie tale of secrets, obsession, heartache, shame, loneliness, deception, familial drama, and utter desperation. Overall, The Woman Outside My Door is a crafty, engaging, sinister tale by Ryan that kept me engaged from the very first page and is without a doubt an exceptionally promising debut. Thank you to Simon & Schuster Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Chris C - A Midlife Wife

    One trippy book. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ When you read as many books as I do you kind of find the layouts of the genres to be very similar. You can actually break the book into pieces and know when to expect certain things to happen in the story. This new author dismantled that structure just a bit with this fresh story. It’s a haunting look at dealing with grief and healing through loss. Ryan takes a reasonable explanation for a child losing a grandparent and turns that into something that could be One trippy book. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ When you read as many books as I do you kind of find the layouts of the genres to be very similar. You can actually break the book into pieces and know when to expect certain things to happen in the story. This new author dismantled that structure just a bit with this fresh story. It’s a haunting look at dealing with grief and healing through loss. Ryan takes a reasonable explanation for a child losing a grandparent and turns that into something that could be much more sinister. But maybe Georgina is making it up. After all, she’s very stressed and is not always in her right mind. The author has inserted ample opportunities to sprinkle reasonable and unreasonable situations coupled with that “what-if” doubt throughout the story to throw us off the path. I wanted to really like her husband, Bren, and while he seems supportive, there are other little shades of gaslighting that show up unexpectedly. While Ryan could’ve gone down the traditional route, the author spins us with interesting situations that seem a bit out there in a normal family structure. The Woman at My Door is a haunting and frightful story that honestly isn’t that far-fetched. With imaginative spins and theories, Ryan ramps up the story with each page turn. Ryan is a fresh new voice in the suspense thriller genre. She will be one author that you want to watch. * copy received for review consideration Full review - https://amidlifewife.com/the-woman-ou...

  16. 4 out of 5

    Dana

    This was such a stellar debut! Twisty, suspenseful and captivating! A bit of a slow start but once things started picking up I couldn't put this down. I NEEDED to know who "The Woman Outside My Door" was ... "New Granny" Cody's imaginary friend has Georgina on high alert. Strange events and questionable comments made by Georgina's 7 year old son have her questioning just how pretend his friend really is. This book had me suspecting SO MANY characters! It was so well done. The ending was extremel This was such a stellar debut! Twisty, suspenseful and captivating! A bit of a slow start but once things started picking up I couldn't put this down. I NEEDED to know who "The Woman Outside My Door" was ... "New Granny" Cody's imaginary friend has Georgina on high alert. Strange events and questionable comments made by Georgina's 7 year old son have her questioning just how pretend his friend really is. This book had me suspecting SO MANY characters! It was so well done. The ending was extremely satisfying... didn't see that coming at all. Huge thank you to Simon and Schuster Canada for my review copy!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Out of the Bex

    You could read this entire review, but there's no need to waste your precious time on anything other than the pages of this refreshingly satisfying book. To put it bluntly: Yes. It is everything you've been looking for in a mystery/thriller. Go ahead and press that buy button. You won't regret it. My five-star reviews, though rare, are often the most difficult to write. What can I really offer you other than to repetitively profess my love for said five-star book until it physically exhausts you You could read this entire review, but there's no need to waste your precious time on anything other than the pages of this refreshingly satisfying book. To put it bluntly: Yes. It is everything you've been looking for in a mystery/thriller. Go ahead and press that buy button. You won't regret it. My five-star reviews, though rare, are often the most difficult to write. What can I really offer you other than to repetitively profess my love for said five-star book until it physically exhausts you and then eagerly push the nearest copy into your waiting hands? Not much, if we're honest, but I can try. The Woman Outside My Door is as near perfect as a modern thriller can be. I questioned everything—all the time. I had theories—none of them were right. I could stay up all night reading it—and nearly did. Rachel Ryan puts you into the mind of her character; you feel her anxiety as she feels it, her tension as it builds, the pain of her discoveries as they come to light. In addition, The Woman Outside My Door performed all of my most favorite tropes to their paragon. It's tempting to list them here, but I must reign my fingers in as I type for fear of inadvertently spoiling something for you. Buy it. Read it. Send it to a friend. And buckle up, cause it's a fun ride.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Barbara Schultz

    4+ Yep a Great psychological thriller read! When 7-year Cody and his friends are playing outside and called in, it takes Cody longer than the others. His mother states she will come and get him if he doesn’t come out of the bushes. He appears with candy and says “an old lady” gave to him. Mom doesn’t see anyone and believes Cody took the candy and is ‘telling a story’. Soon mom finds Cody talking on the phone which is something he often did with his Granny, however Granny died 6 months ago. Cody 4+ Yep a Great psychological thriller read! When 7-year Cody and his friends are playing outside and called in, it takes Cody longer than the others. His mother states she will come and get him if he doesn’t come out of the bushes. He appears with candy and says “an old lady” gave to him. Mom doesn’t see anyone and believes Cody took the candy and is ‘telling a story’. Soon mom finds Cody talking on the phone which is something he often did with his Granny, however Granny died 6 months ago. Cody is talking to “New Granny”! Does Cody have an imaginary friend as it is not unusual for young children to have imaginary friends or is Georgina Cody’s mom still experience her own grief and is paranoid and over reacting? Awww the situation soon develops into something fast paced and heart pounding. This is Ms. Ryan debut novel and I certainly look forward to her next story. BTW: When I started to read this I wanted to know more about this author. I checked author’s info. but Goodreads had nothing. I Googled and got that Rachel Ryan is a pen name of Sandra Brown. I read the author’s info at the end of the novel. This Rachel Ryan is from Dublin and can found hanging out writing in coffee shops in Dublin! Want to thank NetGalley and Gallery for this early release granted in exchange for an honest professional review. Opinions expressed in this review are my own. Publishing Release Date scheduled for January 5, 2021.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Susan's Reviews

    My thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for a free ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Well done for a debut thriller! Plenty of red herrings and very likeable characters. The plot twist was a doozie, and I liked how the author wove a major black mark in Ireland's history into this story. A few of the characters needed fleshing out, but I suspect this author will be able to breathe fuller life into all of her characters as she gains experience. The writing was smooth and a My thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for a free ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Well done for a debut thriller! Plenty of red herrings and very likeable characters. The plot twist was a doozie, and I liked how the author wove a major black mark in Ireland's history into this story. A few of the characters needed fleshing out, but I suspect this author will be able to breathe fuller life into all of her characters as she gains experience. The writing was smooth and addictive - a great read overall. I realized that I don't dare go into any more details about this story without major spoilers, so I'm just going to say: a highly recommended first effort!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Monika

    4.25/5 Initial Thoughts - Fast paced + tense + mysterious If you read a lot of thrillers, you will figure out “the woman” at around 85%, but it doesn’t diminish the interest you’ll have to read it through!! Considering this is a debut, deserves to be appreciated 👏 Final thoughts - My first read of 2021 and I wasn’t disappointed. 4.25/5 ⭐️ Georgina, Bren & Cody - a small family of three live in Dublin, Ireland. On the outside, they may seem perfect, but they all have their secrets. Georgina is devas 4.25/5 Initial Thoughts - Fast paced + tense + mysterious If you read a lot of thrillers, you will figure out “the woman” at around 85%, but it doesn’t diminish the interest you’ll have to read it through!! Considering this is a debut, deserves to be appreciated 👏 Final thoughts - My first read of 2021 and I wasn’t disappointed. 4.25/5 ⭐️ Georgina, Bren & Cody - a small family of three live in Dublin, Ireland. On the outside, they may seem perfect, but they all have their secrets. Georgina is devastated and is dealing with the death of her mother in the best way; Bren is a cheating husband; Cody like all children is playful, but has an “imaginary” grandmother who gives him sweets and mysteriously talks to him on the phone. Is the grandmother really imaginary? Is the only question I had throughout the book. The author’s debut writing is so fantastic, she had me framing theories with ghosts and serial killers!! She made me not trust anyone, even Georgina at times! There are some intense scenes and I felt cold every-time Georgina got spooked. The one character that grew on me was Bren, I hated him at first. I thought he was responsible for all the bad things that was happening, but he kind of “proved” his innocence; which I liked. The ending gathered all the loose ends together in a heartbreaking way by adding a bit of family history. Overall an entertaining thriller you wouldn’t want to miss. CW - kidnap, mental health, miscarriage, abuse, breaking of planters. Thank you Gallery & Netgalley for the arc in exchange for an honest opinion. Find me on Instagram @monikas.bookblog

  21. 5 out of 5

    Frank Phillips

    3.5 rounded up since this is a debut!! More thoughts to come.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Kammy

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Thank you to the publisher for an advance copy of this book via netgalley! This book brings you on twists and turns...and just when you think you have it figured it out....you don’t! what does a person do when everyone around her thinks she is crazy...when her mom instinct tells her otherwise....when her son’s life is on the line....family secrets eventually catch up to those involved!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    3.5 stars, pretty good and a fast read but I was hoping the mystery was going to be a lot more sinister.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    This was a really interesting premise that ALMOST hit the mark for me. It centers on Georgina, a stressed-out mother to 7 year old Cody, and whose own beloved mother recently passed away. When Cody starts telling her that he has met a new friend who gives him candy and is his "New Granny", Georgina is understandably concerned, but her husband Bren keeps telling her that making up an imaginary friend is a normal thing for young kids to do when they lose someone they love. Though Georgina feels li This was a really interesting premise that ALMOST hit the mark for me. It centers on Georgina, a stressed-out mother to 7 year old Cody, and whose own beloved mother recently passed away. When Cody starts telling her that he has met a new friend who gives him candy and is his "New Granny", Georgina is understandably concerned, but her husband Bren keeps telling her that making up an imaginary friend is a normal thing for young kids to do when they lose someone they love. Though Georgina feels like there is more to it, she can't find proof and Bren isn't really supportive. There were some definite creepy parts in this book and the author threw in many believable red herrings that got me at times thinking the story was too predictable and at times thinking I had done a good detective job of figuring it out- in all cases I was wrong, though. When the villain is revealed, I personally felt like it came came out of left field. Furthermore, I had trouble understanding what that person's end-game was and it was never truly revealed. While I love a twist, I would rather it be something I might be able to figure out, which in this case really wasn't possible. Overall, fast paced read and I liked the creepiness of the potential imaginary friend and the many dead-ends to figuring out the culprit. I did not like the ending and wasn't particularly fond of Georgina, but the story overall was decent. Thanks to Netgalley for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Bridget

    Cody, Georgina's seven-year-old son has a new friend that he met in the park whom he refers to as 'New Granny'. He has had imaginary friends in the past and Bren, Georgina's husband thinks that 'New Granny' is another one so he's unconcerned. Georgina, however, is not convinced and isn't sure what to believe. Her own mum, Rose, died only a few weeks ago so Cody could be trying to deal with his loss of Grandmother Rose, or could it be that someone is lurking in the shadows, watching? The story fol Cody, Georgina's seven-year-old son has a new friend that he met in the park whom he refers to as 'New Granny'. He has had imaginary friends in the past and Bren, Georgina's husband thinks that 'New Granny' is another one so he's unconcerned. Georgina, however, is not convinced and isn't sure what to believe. Her own mum, Rose, died only a few weeks ago so Cody could be trying to deal with his loss of Grandmother Rose, or could it be that someone is lurking in the shadows, watching? The story follows Georgina as she goes about her busy life trying to fit into her days looking after Cody, her studying and her work as well as being a wife to Bren. One year away from qualifying as a teacher she works part-time in a bookshop. Bren works for a tech company and has a master's in psychology. As Georgina worries for Cody's safety, those around her begin to question her sanity, even Georgina herself. Rachel Ryan's character creation is very strong in this novel, the writing crisp and inciting. As the creative plot unfolds a deep sense of eeriness takes root and remains until the final pages. Hidden Lies is a compelling whodunit that flows well, with a surprising ending, all delightfully presented in a neat package. A promising début from Rachel Ryan. I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Little, Brown Book Group UK/ Piatkus via NetGalley. This review is my own unbiased opinion.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Kris - My Novelesque Life

    RATING: 3 STARS 2020; Simon & Schuster Canada The Woman Outside My Door is a debut novel from Rachel Ryan, set in contemporary Ireland. It was nice to read a book set someplace other than US or UK. I listened to this one on audio, and enjoyed the accent and hearing pronunciation of certain words. I was invited by the publisher to try this one out, so thank you Simon & Schuster Canada for my eARC. I had a small beef with the title, for me this gave away a bit of the suspense of the novel, and I als RATING: 3 STARS 2020; Simon & Schuster Canada The Woman Outside My Door is a debut novel from Rachel Ryan, set in contemporary Ireland. It was nice to read a book set someplace other than US or UK. I listened to this one on audio, and enjoyed the accent and hearing pronunciation of certain words. I was invited by the publisher to try this one out, so thank you Simon & Schuster Canada for my eARC. I had a small beef with the title, for me this gave away a bit of the suspense of the novel, and I also don't like Women or Girls in titles. It makes me think of Gone Girl and The Woman in the Window - which weren't favourites. I did see there was another title of this book, Hidden Lies, which I like way better (yet, the cover of this one is gorgeous). I think Ryan is a strong writer and does create suspense. I do feel like there are two ways you can go with these types of stories, and either way feels like a let down. That's more of my preference, so I suggest you take a look at some other reviews, as most loved it. I would definitely try another one of Ryan's novels ***I received a complimentary copy of this ebook from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.***

  27. 5 out of 5

    ʚϊɞ Shelley's ʚϊɞ Book Nook

    First of all I LOVE the cover, it is spooktacular and really went with the theme of the story. I really enjoyed the writing style as it made it easy to read and I can't believe this is a debut author. The plot line was pretty exciting and original...What's scarier than realizing your seven year old kid is talking to an imaginary friend that he claims is his "New Granny" after his grandmother has died!? There are a few twists and turns in this character driven story, I love books like that as it m First of all I LOVE the cover, it is spooktacular and really went with the theme of the story. I really enjoyed the writing style as it made it easy to read and I can't believe this is a debut author. The plot line was pretty exciting and original...What's scarier than realizing your seven year old kid is talking to an imaginary friend that he claims is his "New Granny" after his grandmother has died!? There are a few twists and turns in this character driven story, I love books like that as it makes you care about the people you are reading about and I so worried for Cody and Georgina, her husband Bren though I didn't like so much. Overall a tense and compelling thriller and one of the better ones I have read this year. Disclousure: Thank you NetGalley, Rachel Ryan and Gallery Books for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an impartial review; all opinions are my own. #NetGalley

  28. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Leone-campbell

    The Woman Outside My Door is Rachel Ryan's first novel. It is a chilling story with ghostly undertones which creates a uniquely suspenseful story and will keep you guessing as to the outcome with many twists and turns in between. Georgina, who has recently lost her mother is trying to create a bit of new normalcy in her life. She, along with her husband Bren and young son Cody, and with her widowed father are all trying to pick up the pieces to their lives. On top of this Georgina and Bren had be The Woman Outside My Door is Rachel Ryan's first novel. It is a chilling story with ghostly undertones which creates a uniquely suspenseful story and will keep you guessing as to the outcome with many twists and turns in between. Georgina, who has recently lost her mother is trying to create a bit of new normalcy in her life. She, along with her husband Bren and young son Cody, and with her widowed father are all trying to pick up the pieces to their lives. On top of this Georgina and Bren had been having problems just as her mother began her downfall. Now, they must begin to sort out their relationship as well as help their son heal from losing his grandmother. So when Cody comes home after playing with some friends with candy and tells Georgina his New Granny gave it to him, she is beside herself. Bren feels this is Cody's way of processing his grandmother's death, by pretending she is still here. But as Cody begins talking to his New Granny on the phone, when the phone has not rung, Georgina feels he's taken this imaginary friend to a new level. Then Georgina begins to see and hear things. She believes someone has followed her home. She sees someone staring at her through their window looking into their house. Her husband feels she perhaps should go and see someone, as Cody tries to convince them that he no longer sees New Granny. But Georgiana knows deep in heart New Granny is not imaginary. She is real. Who could she possibly be? What does she want with her family? She feels she needs to protect her family. But from who or what she is unsure. As her life begins to spin out of control, she believes perhaps she does need some help. And as the situation goes from disturbing to deranged, Georgina realizes she is in the fight of her life to save her family. Although The Woman Outside My Door is Ryan's first novel, with the fascinating and gripping plot, surprising moments and compelling ending, I am quite sure it will not be her last. Thank you #GoodReads #GalleryBooks #TheWomanOutsideMyDoor #RachelRyan for the advanced copy.

  29. 4 out of 5

    LibraryCin

    When 7-year old Cody comes out of the bushes in the park and tells his mom his “new granny” gave him sweets, Georgina panics. The only grandmother Cody ever knew, Georgina’s mother, died 6 months earlier. At home, Cody gets phone calls; if Georgina answers the phone, the person on the other end doesn’t speak. Other odd things start happening. Georgina feels that someone is stalking her little boy. However, Georgina is still dealing with the loss of her mother, plus there are things going wrong i When 7-year old Cody comes out of the bushes in the park and tells his mom his “new granny” gave him sweets, Georgina panics. The only grandmother Cody ever knew, Georgina’s mother, died 6 months earlier. At home, Cody gets phone calls; if Georgina answers the phone, the person on the other end doesn’t speak. Other odd things start happening. Georgina feels that someone is stalking her little boy. However, Georgina is still dealing with the loss of her mother, plus there are things going wrong in her marriage. I thought this was really good. You can’t tell if she is a reliable narrator. I was annoyed by Georgina’s husband, Bren, who kept dismissing her fears. I felt like he changed his mind a bit too quickly, though, when he started believing Georgina’s fears. He shouldn’t have dismissed them so quickly to start with, but he also seemed to come around too fast, in comparison with how he’d originally reacted. Even still, it kept me reading. It’s a fast read and kept me wanting to find out what was going on.

  30. 4 out of 5

    oohlalabooks

    This is a fast paced, creepy, intense thriller! Georgina is trying really hard to keep her sanity having her lost her mom and finding bits of her husband’s, Bren, one night of passion with his an ex girlfriend. All while going to college, working, and being a mom to seven year old Cody. Cody begins to mention a new granny who is kind and gives him treats. There’s always a creepy vibe whenever new granny is around. Bren believes it’s Cody way of grieving and clearly thinks Georgina is paranoid. T This is a fast paced, creepy, intense thriller! Georgina is trying really hard to keep her sanity having her lost her mom and finding bits of her husband’s, Bren, one night of passion with his an ex girlfriend. All while going to college, working, and being a mom to seven year old Cody. Cody begins to mention a new granny who is kind and gives him treats. There’s always a creepy vibe whenever new granny is around. Bren believes it’s Cody way of grieving and clearly thinks Georgina is paranoid. Things start to shake up as it gets twisty! Thank you to Gallery Books and NetGalley for an ebook ARC. This is my honest review.

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