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Review by Suze
Natalie is a teacher, so she has a long and lazy summer ahead of her. For the first time in many years the Elm Hill lido is open again. The pool has been restored and is a glorious place to spend a warm summer day. Natalie feels at home there immediately. Her daughter Molly can't swim and is afraid of water, but fortunately she's old enough to spend time with her friends, so Natalie can still go to the pool. There she meets Lara and she's drawn to her like a moth to a flame. Lara is glamorous, gorgeous and popular, everything that Natalie is not.
Natalie is surprised when Lara invites her to parties and shows an interest in her. She loves it and spends as much time with her new friends as she possibly can. She's neglecting her family and longtime best friends. Her husband is a tutor and he has work to do during the summer, but even when he's free Natalie has better things to do. She's happy to be included. Are her new friends really as nice as she thinks they are though?
While I was reading The Swimming Pool I constantly felt ill at ease. I loved how Louise Candlish manages to keep a constant level of tension and suspicion. The Swimming Pool is a book filled with secrets, unreliable characters and fascinating events. Something has happened and it's slowly being revealed. Everything in this story is exactly as it should be and it's the preciseness that makes this book so incredible. Louise Candlish has a great sense of timing and she delivers exactly when the story requires it.
Natalie isn't the most wonderful person in the world. She idolizes her Lara and can't believe her luck when Lara starts including her as she knows she doesn't really fit in. It's obvious that there's something more going on and I couldn't wait to find out what it was. Natalie's husband isn't a sensitive person, Lara is over the top and Molly is reclusive. Does Natalie deserve better people in her life? Together they are a great recipe for disaster. Louise Candlish lets her readers know straight away that something indeed went very wrong, only it takes a while before she shows them what it is.
Louise Candlish's writing flows easily. I loved the fact that she tells her story in such a calm way while actually there's a lot going on which is making it extra creepy. The ending is surprising and it's scarier than I expected. The last chapter is shocking and I absolutely loved this amazing finale. I can't recommend this book enough. I think it's a fantastic suffocating story with a lot of repressed suspense.