Review of Zero Days, by Ruth Ware

Zero Days

by Ruth Ware
read by Imogen Church

Simon & Schuster Audio, 2023. 14 hours, 10 minutes.
Review written July 17, 2023, from a library eaudiobook.
Starred Review

Okay, if you like thrillers at all, this is one of the best I’ve read. I started finding excuses to keep listening to the audiobook (which I usually do while doing chores) because I was completely invested in the story.

It begins with a young woman named Jack breaking into a large office building. And it takes subtlety, strength, planning, and attention to detail. I found myself hoping it was like the beginning of the Scarlett & Browne books, showing a successful heist to start off, so that we’d understand how capable our main characters are. Because it was super tense, and I was already afraid she was going to get caught.

Speaking to her through her earpiece, helping direct her movements and evade security, was her husband Gabe. They clearly have a great working relationship and deep fondness for one another, with a little flirting along with the danger. I found myself thinking that it’s very unusual for a main character to be in a great marriage right at the start of the book. I had a bad feeling that situation wouldn’t last.

I won’t even tell you how those gut feelings were fulfilled or not fulfilled. If you read a description you’ll find out, because it’s the very beginning — but I did enjoy the suspense right from the start.

What I will tell you is that Jack ends up being on the run from the police while trying to solve a mystery — and pretty much everything is against her and she doesn’t know whom she can trust.

And she’s a character I couldn’t help but admire, incredibly good at tight situations, so I was invested in her making it, but not at all sure how or if she would. The tension doesn’t ever let up.

I have to say that Imogen Church is the perfect narrator for a young British woman in a tense situation. I’ve listened to quite a few of her audiobooks by now and she adds to my enjoyment. I’d had the audio sped up with the previous audiobook I’d listened to, and had to slow it back down to normal, because she speaks quickly and keeps the tension going.

I’m currently on the Morris Award Committee for YA debut novels, so only have time to “read” novels for adults in audio form, and the only problem with this thriller is it made me want to spend all my time with it, not reading the award-eligible books I needed to read. So good! Give it a try!

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Disclaimer: I am a professional librarian, but the views expressed are solely my own, and in no way represent the official views of my employer or of any committee or group of which I am part.

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