Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.
Winter Girl is a well written thriller with a compact writing style that crams a lot of action into few pages. I like that. The main character, Scott is led into a quagmire of questionable deeds and ill fated motives that reek of Hitchcock. The reader is along for the ride among the compelling twists and turns that this novel takes.
Scott along with his wife, Elise, live in Brooklyn but have moved to Elise's father's house in the Hamptons as he lies dying from cancer in a hospital close by. Both Scott and his wife, Elise, a speech therapist, have taken leaves of absences to wait out the impending death of Elise's father, Victor. Scott, who is a photographer of wedding couples, has not been doing particularly well in business, so the change of scenery for him might be a good thing. This is hardly the case however. Victor is not a kind man, with a violent streak and a horrid nature. Neither Scott or Elise seem especially upset about Victor's impending death, and this lack of caring seems to permeate the story. No character is deeply likeable at all.
The story takes place during the winter months, with a dark and moody atmosphere, with much of the action taking place at night or in a subdued light. The winter days pass in the old man's house. One night, Scott notices the house next door's light going off inside, and then it happens again at precisely the same time. With little to do around Victor's house besides moping around, Scott decides to investigate. This is where the trouble and derangement begins. The initial visit to the neighboring house set off a series of events that could not have been predicted.
This book has a strong icky, creepy nuance to it throughout, but that is part of the fun. Hard to put down, the writer forces you to read until the end. When you read the end, you will certainly be surprised, and yet think, "I should have thought of that".