Watching Over You - Psychological Thriller by Mel Sherratt
Watching Over You is a psychological thriller, written by British author, Mel Sherratt.
Watching Over You appealed to me as it was a stand alone psychological thriller that dealt with the gritty side of women living in the small area of Stoke-on-Trent, UK.
The story introduces us to Ella, who is a damaged young woman with a lot of psychological problems. She has lost her parents at a young age and grew up in the 'system' where she suffered abuse at the hands of adults and peers. Ella is now in her mid-30s and making a life of her own. She owns a semi-detached unit. She lives upstairs and rents the unit on the first floor to Charley.
Charley is a social worker specialising in women who have faced domestic violence. She lost her husband in a car accident and is still grieving for him when she moves in downstairs from Ella.
Ella seeks to befriend Charley and seduce her. However, her plans fail and the psychological fallout for Ella threatens to spin her out of control. She watches helplessly as Charley falls in love with a male co-worker and develops a loving relationship. Jealous and resentful, Ella seeks to outrun her emotions via numerous promiscuous activities.
Ella is very interesting character who lives a double-life and has a desperate need to be loved. Yet her actions continue to push that love away.
Charley thinks that life is great now with her new boyfriend. However, Ella's behaviour becomes erratic and hard to comprehend as her obsession with Charley escalates. Ella has no boundaries and what she does is shocking. Ella's obsession peaks with Charley finding herself in a life and death situation.
Mel Sherratt describes her fiction as 'grit-lit', being a cross between gritty writing and chick-lit. Her writing is raw and emotional. It draws the reader in to the world of the characters and they keep you in their world as you read on to discover what happens next.
Some people absolutely love Mel Sherratt's writing and other people hate it. There is no in-between for readers of her work. It appears that men do not like Mel Sherratt's writing (by her own admission in podcast interviews with Joanna Penn at The Creative Penn and The Rocking Self-Publishing Podcast), however, numerous women enjoy her fiction and the subjects that her characters face head-on because they relate to the emotional context of the character's lives.
YouTube podcast interview by Joanna Penn, The Creative Penn: The Entrepreneurial Realities of Being a Pro Writer with Mel Sherratt
The book is for an adult audience. It has swearing, sex and murder in the content, so be warned - if you do not like this kind of content, do not read this book.
Personally, I enjoyed reading Watching Over You. The swearing, sex and murder helped to shape the character in my mind and bring them all to life. I was haunted by the characters well after I finished the last page.
If you enjoy psychological thrillers and chick-lit with a dash of grit, then you might enjoy reading Watching Over You by Mel Sherratt.