Books,  Reviews

The Death of Mrs. Westaway – Book Review

Please note that this post may contain affiliate links, meaning I may make a small commission if you purchase through the links within this post at no additional cost to you. Please see my Full Disclosures + Privacy Policy for more details.


On a day that begins like any other, Hal receives a mysterious letter bequeathing her a substantial inheritance. She realizes very quickly that the letter was sent to the wrong person—but also that the cold-reading skills she’s honed as a tarot card reader might help her claim the money.

Soon, Hal finds herself at the funeral of the deceased…where it dawns on her that there is something very, very wrong about this strange situation and the inheritance at the centre of it.

Synopsis source: Goodreads


Genre(s): Mystery/Thriller, Psychological Thriller, Gothic
HB&W Rating: 3.75
View on Goodreads
Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble

Après moi, le déluge. . . .

This was my first Ruth Ware novel, and won’t be my last. I really enjoyed how the story unfolded and how Ms. Ware’s mind worked. The gothic thriller was perfect for this time of the year too!

Because superstition was a trap – that was what she had learned, in the years of plying her trade on the pier. Touching wood, crossing fingers, counting magpies – they were all lies, all of them. False promises designed to give the illusion of control and meaning in a world in which the only destiny came from yourself. You can’t predict the future, Hal knew.

You have Hal, a down-on-her-luck orphan peddling fortunes on the Brighton Pier using her mom’s old deck of tarot cards. She’s broke, dodging a loan shark, and one step away from complete destitution. Then a mysterious letter arrives, informing her that her grandmother has passed away and she has been named in the will. The only problem? Her grandmother was dead before she had ever been born. Sensing a mixup, but feeling the breath of the loan shark’s enforcer breathing down her neck, she decides to masquerade as the woman’s granddaughter, hoping for a small bequest that would be nothing to these wealthy “relatives” but would mean everything to her.

With a cast of characters who you’re never really certain of, you will begin to see, like Hal does, that not everything is as it should be here, and these people are hiding secrets that they don’t want to have revealed.

Ms. Ware paced this novel perfectly, gradually revealing her secrets at the perfect moments to keep the reader guessing right up to the end. From the three uncles to the creepy housekeeper, to the maternal aunt, what are they hiding? With a pervading sense of doom from beginning to end, and a heart pounding climax, this book delivered.

If I had to pick at anything, I would have to pick at the main character, Hal. It felt like we were told several times that she’s a tough, badass chick, which never really rang true with the way she was written. It seemed inauthentic to me. She wasn’t as strong of a female main character as I would have liked.

But truly, overall, I really enjoyed the book and I look forward to reading more by this author.

I hope you enjoyed this review! Subscribe to the blog for more! Not all of my reviews make it to the blog, so be sure to also follow me on Goodreads so you don’t miss any books!

Until next time,

Be sure to subscribe to my blog so you never miss a review! You can also sign up for my newsletter for a recap of titles read, crochet patterns I’ve released, and more! I only send it out sporadically so that I don’t spam you, promise. 😉

Leave a Reply