Author: Anna George
Published: 2014 by Viking, an imprint of Penguin Books
Read: December 2014
Why it made it to the top of the pile: This arrived during mid-year madness at my place, and amongst school holidays, kids' sport, uni assignments and a new job, I missed it. I found it again just before Christmas, just in time for a few lazy days between Christmas and New Year.
Categories: Fiction, contemporary, crime, debuts, Australian authors, AWW2014
Full Disclosure: Advance Reading Copy courtesy the publisher and TheReadingRoom
Trivia Tidbit: Initially trained as a lawyer, Anna began her writing career verifying footnotes for a legal encyclopaedia.
"My name is David James Forrester. I'm a solicitor. Tonight, at 6.10, I killed my wife."
What Came Before is the story of David and Elle's relationship. It is about pros and cons, reasons to stay and reasons to go, and about love, hate and indifference. It is a beautifully written book, about 'the risks you take when you fall in love', and even knowing how it ends does not leave you less engaged with the story. It offers an insight into the world behind domestic crime, where the unacceptable becomes everyday, and the hope for redemption overcomes the instinct for self-preservation.
This is a fabulous debut from Anna George, full of nuance and understanding. It is difficult to sing its praises too loudly without giving away spoilers, and the dance of David and Elle's relationship is best described by George, so if domestic thriller/suspense is your type of book, I recommend you read this.