Book Review: ‘Disclaimer’ by Renée Knight

Posted April 13, 2015 by thischickreads in review / 9 Comments


‘DISCLAIMER stealthily steals your attention and by the end holds you prisoner – a searing story that resonates long after the final page. The best thriller I’ve read this year’ – Rosamund Lupton

What if you realized the book you were reading was all about you?

When an intriguing novel appears on Catherine’s bedside table, she curls up in bed and begins to read.

But as she turns the pages she is sickened to realize the story will reveal her darkest secret.

A secret she thought no one else knew…


*Copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review*

Oh guys, ‘Disclaimer’ is one of these ‘Oh my God’, ‘WTF’ mind blowing psychological thrillers, that will get you hooked from the first page. It’s Renee Knight’s debut, but I swear to god, it doesn’t feel like a debut at all! Renee shows such magnificent skill in plotting amazing characters and creating dark and atmospheric story.

The book follows two stories, which though at the beginning seem they are not connected, they are in fact, very strongly. Catherine Ravenscroft is a successful documentary filmmaker, happily married and seems to lead the most amazing life until one day she finds a book at her home, starts reading and realizes the book is about her.

It seems she’s kept some secrets for decades and someone is trying to ruin her and her marriage. But what are the reasons someone is doing this to her after so many years? Who is this person that knows her so well and knows exactly what happened years ago?

Stephen Brigstocke is a retired teacher, a widower and apparently someone who just discovered something his dear wife Nancy was keeping secret for so many years. He’s tired and old, but he’s got a mission and it’s finally time to get the masks off and see who some people are. It’s time for them to pay for something they’ve done years ago. Some things need a closure and it’s up to him to reveal these dark secrets.

The story goes back and forth in time, to when Catherine was a young women, recently married and when Stephen was a teacher. It builds up gradually, revealing bits from Catherine’s and Stephen’s life. What I was most impressed by are the author’s skills to narrate from male’s POV, bearing in mind the author is a female. I can’t say I felt connected to any of the characters, but the story was so intense and gripping, that I really didn’t think much about the characters’ flaws. They were flawed and that made them look even more real. I could almost see Catherine’s face freeze the moment she came to that part in the book which is the big bang! I could also feel Stephen’s sorrow and great obsession.

I was reading and tweeting my fascination with this book and remember feeling so sad when I realized Renee isn’t on twitter, & I don’t have the chance to tell her by myself how much I’m loving the book. However, I must say even though I loved the concept, the development of the characters and the story’s pace, I was just tiny bit disappointed with the ending. It’s not that the ending was bad or I had some expectations for it, it’s just that some explanations at the end didn’t seem right to me. Maybe the ending felt bit rushed too, as if Renee wanted us to finally catch some air and loose the tension, but this was not my problem. Let’s just say I needed more facts to believe in something, and this is where I’ll stop as I’d hate to spoil the book for you.

Despite questioning some stuff at the ending, I really enjoyed ‘Disclaimer’. It’s one highly praised book and now I can totally understand why. It’s thought provoking, dark and gripping, and will haunt you for a long time. It will make you wonder how well do people know themselves and their partner and are there any big, dark secrets they’re keeping away from the world. Twisty, grippy psych thriller you must not miss out on.


My rating: 8/10


9 responses to “Book Review: ‘Disclaimer’ by Renée Knight

    • thischickreads

      Hi Dawn, thanks so much for stopping by. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great psych thriller and I totally approve it going straight to your TBR list. However, I had to give my reasons for my rating (8/10, or 4* on a scale to 5). Hope you enjoy it!

  1. Em

    This sounds wonderful! Looks really gripping and something totally different! Thanks for sharing

    Em at xx

  2. I loved your review Ana, and I am so relieved that someone else apart from me was a little disappointed by the ending – I was beginning to feel like a lone voice! Despite that, it is a very good twisty read and scored 4/5 for me.

    • thischickreads

      Hi lovely, thanks so much! You totally get me then, it’s a brill book but some stuff at the ending…just didn’t work for me. I too am glad I’m not the only one. But it’s still a fantastic debut..very impressed with Renee’s writing. xx

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