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The Quiet Tenant

On sale

20th June 2023

Price: £14.99

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Selected: Hardcover / ISBN-13: 9781408716861

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‘Clémence Michallon has written a classic… Daring and completely satisfying’ James Patterson

‘Beautifully written, entirely convincing and relentlessly gripping … so brilliantly told, with characters so plausible and compelling, that I was hooked until the last word’ Sophie Hannah

‘From the first page, you can say farewell to sleep…a brilliant, breathtaking thriller with characters you love – and love to hate. I didn’t know whether to tear to the end or savour every page’ Abigail Dean, bestselling author of Girl A

‘An absorbing and addictive psychological thriller – I couldn’t put it down’
Edel Coffey

‘I was pulled in from the very first page…
The plot was masterful, the many threads honed and pulled taut kept me turning pages‘ Jane Shemilt

He took you and you have been his for five years. But you have been careful. Waiting for him to mess up. It has to be now.

Aidan Thomas is a hardworking family man and a respected member of his community. He’s the kind of man who always lends a hand and has a good word for everyone. He’s also a kidnapper and serial killer who has murdered eight women. And there’s a ninth, a woman he calls Rachel, imprisoned in a backyard shed where she fears for her life.

When Aidan’s wife dies, he and his thirteen-year-old daughter, Cecilia, are forced to move. Aidan has no choice but to bring Rachel too, introducing her to Cecilia as a family friend who needs a place to stay. He knows that after five years of captivity, Rachel is too frightened of the consequences to attempt to escape. But Rachel is a fighter and a survivor. And when Emily, a local restaurant owner, develops a crush on the handsome widower, she finds herself drawn into Rachel and Cecilia’s orbit, coming dangerously close to discovering Aidan’s secret.

The Quiet Tenant explores the psychological impact of Aidan’s crimes on the women in his life through the voices of Rachel, Cecilia, and Emily – and the bonds between those women that give them the strength to fight back. Both a searing thriller and an astute study of trauma, survival, and the dynamics of power, The Quiet Tenant is an electrifying novel by a major talent.


Jane Casey
I am in awe of Clémence Michallon's talent. The Quiet Tenant is a heart-racing thriller but also a beautiful work about survival, sacrifice and the responsibility we bear to others...Breathtaking
Shots magazine
Cleverly constructed, well written and harrowing in the extreme from the very first page, this is an unforgettable debut. If this is a first novel, what's the next going to be like? I dread to think - literally. Congratulations to Clémence Michallon, queen of the psychological thriller. We'll be waiting
James Patterson
Clémence Michallon has written a classic on her first try. The Quiet Tenant is a daring and completely satisfying mystery; a one-of-a-kind; a bravura feat of storytelling
Library Journal
A brutal, sad, heartbreaking story focused on resilience and survival. Recommended for fans of true crime stories, Gillian Flynn, or Jessica Knoll
The Independent, Biggest New Reads for June
I can recommend The Quiet Tenant by Clémence Michallon. The story of a male serial killer called Aidan Thomas is told from multiple perspectives, in a way that centres the female voices of his victims. It's a pacy thriller and a sharp study of survival
Catherine Ryan Howard, bestselling author of Run Time
Immersive from page one, thrilling, at times unbearably tense, intelligent, electrifying and moving. I loved it
Lisa Ballantyne, author of Richard and Judy bestseller The Guilty One
Stunning. Terrifying. Impossible to put down. A remarkable achievement
Nightmarish, nerve-jangling, and horrifying, this one is not for the fainthearted, but it's an explosive, utterly gripping read
Khurrum Rahman, author of the Jay Qasim trilogy
I loved this book so much. So disturbing but so beautifully written. Clemence Michallon is an author to watch out for...Truly outstanding
Sophie Hannah
A beautifully written, entirely convincing and relentlessly gripping novel, featuring a protagonist in captivity. She's been kidnapped and taking prisoner by a serial killer, and her only mission is to stay alive long enough to find a way to escape. This isn't a mystery puzzle novel, so I'm surprised that I loved it as much as I did, because usually I like to be able to solve a mystery (or cheer on the solving of one) when I'm reading crime fiction, but this tale is so brilliantly told, with characters so plausible and compelling, that I was hooked until the last word
Observer, Best Crime and Thrillers of the month
A nail-biting terror of a read, slowly revealing how Rachel, already a little bit broken, ended up where she did....And then following as her courage incrementally ratchets up, as brainwashed and terrified, she starts to eye, and then discard, her opportunities to escape. I finished it at very high speed, heart pounding, absolutely loving it
Araminta Hall
The Quiet Tenant seethes with male anger and aggression and yet its beating heart is about the strength of women and our ability to survive. I was desperate to find out what happened to Rachel and all the characters because I was so invested. Beautifully written and observed
Kirkus Reviews
While a widowed man falls for a bartender, the woman he's held hostage for years plots her escape in this fast-paced thriller . . . A twisted premise that raises unexpected moral questions
Paul Tremblay, bestselling author of The Cabin at the End of the World
The Quiet Tenant is a humane thriller, one that doesn't shy from asking the most difficult questions of its characters and its readers, and dares, ultimately, hopeful answers. Intelligent and suspenseful, I couldn't stop turning the pages
Best magazine, Best Books for June
In a small American town, single dad Aidan is regarded as a good guy, but he is hiding a secret - he is a serial killer and kidnapper, and is holding a woman captive in his shed. A chilling depiction of evil
Brad Thor, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dead Fall
The Quiet Tenant is an absolutely brilliant, incredibly delicious, edge-of-your-set thriller. Imagine Jodi Picoult meets Jeffery Deaver and then watch as Clémence Michallon exceeds every one of your expectations. She's that good. The book is that good. And the ending is a killer!
Jane Shemilt, bestselling author of The Patient
I was pulled in from the very first page. The plot was masterful, the many threads honed and pulled taut kept me turning pages. I loved the dynamic between the protagonist and victims, which is very truthful and powerfully told...Extraordinarily accomplished
Kimberly McCreight, New York Times bestselling author of Friends Like These
A mystery that is at once riveting and heartrending, The Quiet Tenant is a sharply insightful look at what it means to live and love as a woman in this harrowing world. It is truly extraordinary
Edel Coffey, bestselling author of Breaking Point
Breathtakingly brilliant. I tore through it and was absolutely hooked from the first chapter. It tells us so much about how gender works in our society, about power dynamics in relationships and what can lie behind the illusion of a good husband, father and neighbour. An absorbing and addictive psychological thriller - I couldn't put it down
Alafair Burke
Clemence Michallon has managed to re-imagine the serial killer novel, delivering all (and frankly, more) of the expected suspense and psychological tension, but offering a story about women - the ones who didn't know the evil that lurked within, the ones who tried to placate or fight but still perished, the ones who might actually survive. Haunting but never prurient, The Quiet Tenant is truly unforgettable. Read it
Megan Abbott
Clémence Michallon's The Quiet Tenant is a spell-binding Trojan horse of a novel, bracing and beguiling. A dangerous man and his unforgivable crimes are its seeming center but, in Michallon's nimble hands, the novel soon reveals itself to be a story of female strength, cunning, depth and power
Washington Post
A gripping psychological suspense novel.. Michallon's riveting tale shows a killer through the eyes of the women in his life
Janice Hallett, Crime Reads
This impressive debut follows the escape plan of a woman held captive in plain sight by an outwardly respectable serial killer
New York Times Book Review
An expertly paced psychological thriller...with a white-knuckle climax
Daily Express
This slow-burning but gripping novel stands out in the overcrowded "women held prisoner" genre
Victoria Selman, bestselling author of Truly, Darkly, Deeply
Extraordinary and utterly original... Michallon has created a modern masterpiece. I can't wait to read what she does next!
Dark and Emma Donohue's Room, the novel takes this creepy and claustrophobic premise and spins a paradoxically expansive plot from it, told from the perspective of his victim, his daughter, and a local restaurant owner
Rob Gold, author of Eleven Liars
The tension in The Quiet Tenant grips from the very first page. The novel's emotional intensity never lets go, keeping hold until the very last page...Wonderful
Abigail Dean, bestselling author of Girl A
From the first page, you can say farewell to sleep, conversation, Netflix. This is Room meets Notes on an Execution, a brilliant, breathtaking thriller with characters you love - and love to hate. I didn't know whether to tear to the end or savour every page
Publishers Weekly (starred review)
In this dazzling debut thriller from journalist Michallon, handsome Hudson Valley family man Aidan Thomas has a ghastly secret in his shed - and even worse ones hidden elsewhere...The ensuing match of wits and wills between Rachel and Aidan becomes almost excruciating in Michallon's skillful hands, and as challenging as the going can get, it's impossible to look away from. This is a smart, female-focused inversion of the serial killer thriller perfect for readers who otherwise wouldn't give the genre a second look