The Night Guest

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October 04, 2013 at 04:00 AM EDT

Loneliness plays subtle tricks on Ruth, a widow who, in isolation and old age, imagines a tiger prowling through her living room one night, in The Night Guest. Shortly after, a brassy and capable government nurse named Frida arrives unbidden at Ruth’s remote home on the Australian shore. Initially, Ruth is glad to have this lively woman adding color to her days, but as their relationship deepens into an intense intimacy, Frida gives Ruth reason to doubt her identity and intentions. What at first appears to be a quiet little novel proves an enthralling psychological thriller in which every gesture and detail is loaded with meaning. This stellar debut will haunt you — and remind you to call your mother. A-

The Night Guest

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The Night Guest

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