It's getting to the stage now where you'd be forgiven for wondering if we're at peak "how well do you know those nearest and dearest to you" psychological thrillers, particularly those that concentrate on the relationship between husbands and wives. Which makes REMEMBER ME THIS WAY a noteworthy novel - standing out as extremely memorable in a very crowded peer group.
Right from the outset there is something profoundly unsettling about REMEMBER ME THIS WAY. From the time that Lizzie is heading for the spot where her husband Zach died it's an odd situation. When the bunch of lilies from another person appears at the spot where Zach died in a fatal accident it feels right that there's something profoundly off about this whole scenario, not just the odd things that Lizzie is discovering about their relationship, the abuse and manipulation.
Durrant is skilled at creating these discomforting, off-putting scenarios. In REMEMBER ME THIS WAY it's the emotion of the anniversary of Zach's death, it's the diary entries, it's the way that you're often in the head of a man that is now dead and it's the tight focus on Lizzie and Zach. There's something very unsettling about knowing things about a dead man that his own wife never has, and there's something uncomfortably challenging about dealing with Lizzie's emotion and unravelling while you really start to doubt the truth about Zach - right down to whether he is actually alive or dead and therefore what happened in that car accident.
The tension and disquiet starts right at the beginning of REMEMBER ME THIS WAY. It doesn't let up as it walks the reader through an abusive relationship. It's about the secrets that we all have, and the power that knowledge of those secrets can give somebody. It's about who do you trust, and what do you do when trust is obliterated. It's about human relationships and how they can be harmful not helpful.
Everything I've been fortunate enough to read by Sabine Durrant has left me with heaps of questions, and a lot of thinking to be done. For like-minded fans of psychological thrillers, those books that delve into more than just who and what, but why, REMEMBER ME THIS WAY stands out as another outstanding, memorable and thought-provoking book.