Behind Her Eyes and THAT Ending: Spoiler Discussion (#WTFthatending)

This post is full of spoilers, so STOP HERE if you don’t want to know the ending (or other details).

Behind Her Eyes, Sarah PinboroughFiction – Mystery/Thriller
Released January 31, 2016
320 Pages
Bottom Line: Skip it…unless you just want to participate in the discussion.
Affiliate Link: Amazon
Source: Purchased (Publisher: Flatiron Books)









This post contains affiliate links.

I’ve been somewhat burned out of psychological thrillers lately, especially those that are billed as “the next Gone Girl and/or The Girl on the Train.” I generally find that the big twist is either entirely predictable or completely outlandish…and neither one of those situations leaves me feeling satisfied.

My mystery/thriller dream is to find an ending that is surprising, yet with some hindsight, makes sense in the context of the story. Gone Girl did that for me, while I guessed The Girl on the Train‘s ending halfway through the book.

Despite this burnout, I couldn’t resist Flatiron Books’ admittedly brilliant marketing ploy of highlighting Behind Her Eyes‘ crazy ending…even creating a hashtag for it (#WTFthatending). I wondered if maybe this thriller could pull me out of my slump…plus, I wanted to be a part of the discussion about that ending.

Alas…it was not to be.

What did you think of Behind Her Eyes’ ending (aka #WTFthatending)?

In a nutshell: I DESPISED that ending. It absolutely left me saying “WTF,” so I guess it technically lived up to the publisher’s hashtag hype, but it did not work for me. at. all.

Why? Because it fell squarely in the outlandish category I mentioned earlier and it relied entirely on a gimmick (I’ll discuss this a bit more below). When Louise and Adele switched bodies during the fire at the Martin’s house, I rolled my eyes at the fact that the entire ending hinged on two people switching bodies through a door that appears in their “lucid dreams.”

Then, I find out that the entire story from start to finish hinged on Rob inhabiting Adele’s body via the same “lucid dream door” from the get-go?!! I wanted to throw the book across the room.

Did you see the ending coming?

No, I definitely didn’t see it coming. But, I don’t consider that a win for all the reasons I talked about above.

However, I did spend literally the entire book trying to guess what would happen. For your amusement, here are all my guesses:

7%: David burned down Adele’s parents’ house…with them in it. (Wrong)
10%: David drugs Adele on a daily basis…switching out her medication. (Wrong)
18%: Louise will unknowingly be Adele’s puppet. (Right)
30% Adele bugged Louise’s apartment and David’s office. (Wrong)
42%: Adele is trying to orchestrate it so she can leave David (so she can regain control of her parents’ estate) and he will take the fall because of his cheating and “abuse.” (Wrong)
78% Adele can spy on Louise and David because of the second dream door. (Right)
51%: Adele faked the dream notebook she gave to Louise. (Wrong)
51%: Adele will have Louise kill David. (Wrong)
52%: Adele will trick David or Louise into killing her. She wants to die anyway and she’ll get revenge on either of them by letting them live with the guilt of killing her. (Wrong)
69%: Adele and David killed Rob. (Wrong)
88%: Louise is seriously mentally ill too. (Wrong)
93% Adele frames Louise for killing her, but will actually commit suicide. Louise will watch all this go down through the second dream door. (Kind of right, kind of wrong)

How do you feel about knowing in advance that an ending will be crazy or controversial?

I normally like to go into plot-centric books fairly blind.

I read Gone Girl before all the hype and one of the reasons it was so successful for me was that I didn’t even know there was a massive twist in the book. I was just reading along and BAM…there it was.

That being said, I admit I never would have picked up Behind Her Eyes without all the hype surrounding #WTFthatending. It made me want to be a part of the conversation.

Is lucid dreaming a real thing?

Prior to reading Behind Her Eyes, I’d never heard of lucid dreaming. So, I naturally had to investigate.

World of Lucid Dreaming lends credence to the concept of lucid dreaming existing in real life…down to the dream door. Controlling your dreams through lucid dreaming has been written about in Psychology Today, The Atlantic, and Scientific American. My Google search for “can you inhabit someone else’s body through lucid dreaming” revealed far less scientific results and more discussion threads between people that sounded like quacks.

Being somewhat of a realist, it’s difficult to wrap my head around the entire concept of controlling your dreams. And throw the “inhabiting someone else’s body” on top and it sounds outlandish to me…despite what I found on the Internet. However, knowing at least some level of lucid dreaming could possibly happen in real life makes me give that plot gimmick a tad (but just a tad) more leeway than I did before my research.

Did any other aspects of the book bother you?

Two things stood out to me:

  • I thought it was a total stretch that Louise also happened to suffer from night terrors. It was somewhat believable that Adele and Rob both suffered from them since they met in a treatment facility. But, Louise was a coincidence that felt too random to me…and it’s more unforgivable since the entire story hinges on this coincidence.
  • I questioned Louise’s motivation to take numerous drastic steps to uncover the truth behind the Martins’ marriage (i.e. breaking into her old office), investigate the fire that killed Adele’s parents, and to go after Adele following her “suicide text.” Why would she take these kinds of risks especially given she was putting her young son in danger…and/or risking leaving him motherless if something should happen to her? As a mother, I just didn’t buy it.

Let’s discuss! What did you think of Behind Her Eyes overall and the ending in particular?

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  1. The body switching thing was insane I admit, but the book overall really worked for me! I have a review going up later this morning too, and I think because it was so tense all the way through, I really enjoyed the reading experience as a whole. I’m with you though in Louise going way too far to find things out, and it seemed like Adam didn’t even have to be there at all.

    Posted 2.16.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Oh man – you sadly nailed it about Adam almost not needing to be there at all. I think I would rather them have just cut the character entirely. I did hate that last paragraph of the book insinuating that Rob/Adele was going to kill Adam. Just pushed me over the edge I was already teetering on.

      Posted 2.17.17 Reply
      • Mary wrote:

        I agree 100% about the character of Adam… It actually made me a little sick to my stomach the fact that Louise/Rob talked about… Children are cleansing of accidents… I think that bothered me more than anything else. I also was disturbed that Louise ended up dead… I liked her character despite her flaws… After all, she was just looking for love… Like most of us are… I did enjoy the book and found it hard to put down… But wish the ending would’ve went a little differently.

        Posted 3.8.17 Reply
      • I agree! You are left with Rob plotting on killing an innocent boy and probably his father Ian too. Why? Isn’t it bad enough that David is fucked yet again. I have never been so mad at a book for wasting my time. Why did Adam need to even be a character expecially if you are going to leave us with the possibility that this poor boy who loves his mother is probably going to die? WTF!!!!

        Posted 5.20.17 Reply
        • Beth wrote:

          Adele would probably just cut ties with Ian after Adam’s death. No reason to keep in contact with an ex-husband when there’s no kid.

          Posted 8.30.17 Reply
        • marika wrote:

          Agreed! I was so mad at the end. I have so many good books on my shelf and I wish I had not wasted time on this ridiculous story.

          Posted 8.14.19 Reply
      • Eliza wrote:

        At first I was disgusted with the introduction of the supernatural element, altho I liked the tricky plot and characters. By the end tho it all made beautiful sense as a perfect allegory for the existance and actions of transcismen. Like The Crying Game and The Rocky Horror Picture Show the Transcisman is trying to possess the heterosexual man but has to get rid of the women achieve that. In The Crying Game he kills the woman, his perceived rival . In the Rocky Horror Picture Show, the Transcis man beats his female rival and shoves her aside. In Behind her Eyes he literally takes over her female body instead of just trying to impersonate a woman. Brilliant allegory.

        Posted 3.21.19 Reply
  2. Kay wrote:

    Glad you decided to begin this discussion. As you know, I’m much more of a mystery/thriller reader than many. It’s not quite all I read, but most of what I read. Because of that, I often know that a book is going to have a twist or whatever and I actively spend the time puzzling out what I surmise will happen. As I did with this one. I also have read quite a few books in the ‘paranormal’ vein. That’s what I’m calling this ‘body switching’ thing. So, all this to say that I have a bit of experience figuring out the end. I like the puzzle. And I don’t mind a little ‘out there/paranormal’ storyline.

    I did make a guess that there would something like the body-switching. The first time I thought that was when the ‘leaving the body and looking down on life and neighbors’ began. I wondered at that moment how far the consciousness could go. Especially when Louise found Adele unconscious at Adele’s home. The description of the two of them in the dreaming state was very similar. I did think that David and Adele were in things together (the fire, Rob, using Louise), but it seemed too obvious and there was also David’s drinking – seemed to make him unreliable. After Adele switched bodies with Louise in the end, I wondered again about Rob, remembering back to when Louise talked with Rob’s sister and the sister’s opinion about Rob. So, the final ‘reveal’ was not as much of a surprise. I also wondered if somehow Adele knew about Louise’s night terrors even before David began working with her and orchestrated his new job like she did her ‘accidental’ introduction to Louise. Guess not though. As to Louise taking so many steps, well, she was being programmed by a master manipulator. I was disappointed about her behavior regarding Adam. The only thing that saved me from being way too upset by that was that Adam’s father and stepmother had finally began taking an interest in him. My final feelings about this book were colored by the last things that Rob/Adele/Louise thought about Adam and how ‘accidents happen’ to little boys. For me, that was unacceptable. And majorly annoying.

    Actually, that was the main problem I had with GONE GIRL. The people in it were all despicable. Which was OK enough, I guess, though I do like to have at least one person that I can ‘like’. What upset me was the fact that there would be a child. With those people. Made me throw the book at the wall, so to speak. Just a little ‘hot button’ of mine. Guess that’s all for me. Nice to get to ‘have my say’. LOL

    Posted 2.16.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Now, this would have made the whole thing more believable to me:

      “I also wondered if somehow Adele knew about Louise’s night terrors even before David began working with her and orchestrated his new job like she did her ‘accidental’ introduction to Louise.”

      You should take up a new career as a beta reader for thrillers! Poking holes, making the story better, etc…

      And I completely agree about the last bit about Adam. UGH. Just too much. Even though dislikable characters in general don’t bother me…that was just too much.

      Posted 2.17.17 Reply
      • Suzanne wrote:

        Okay… Running late here, but just finished the book. Love to try to figure out the who-done-its before I’ve finished. First thought: Could David and Adele be the same person since Adele knew everything about what David was doing. Kinda a split personality thing, but my theory didn’t get past Adele visiting the clinic with David. Then I thought that Adele had “bugged” Louise’s apt with mic and camera, but that still didn’t work. Then, I was sssooo disappointed that Louise had “died” once they switched bodies. I kept thinking, “Okay, if they are able to switch bodies [suspending disbelief], hopefully Louise’s personality/spiritualness is so powerful, it will survive even if her body did not.” But, this was not so, to my utter disappointment. So, I shifted to the fact that it had been Rob all along. Plugged​ him into the Adele spots throughout the story, and that worked. But I STILL WANTED DAVID TO FIGURE IT ALL OUT AND SAVE HIMSELF AND ADAM IN THE END! But, alas, this did not happen either. Oh well. Good read, interesting concept, but could have ended in more satisfying way.

        Posted 4.23.17 Reply
  3. I wish I could participate in the discussion. No, wait! I’m glad I can’t. This definitely does not sound like a book for me!

    Posted 2.16.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      HAHA!!! Well, now you know!

      Posted 2.17.17 Reply
    • Connie Harmon wrote:

      Good for you!
      Wish I had never read it.

      Posted 6.7.17 Reply
  4. Jummy wrote:

    The very great post.I just have found other recommendations from this post ,what do you think of these books?

    Posted 2.16.17 Reply
  5. Anita wrote:

    I’m so glad you wrote this post. I also wanted to throw the book against the wall!! I was like…no, just no! When the discussion of the second door kept coming up I wasn’t relating it to this deep lucid dreaming and perhaps crossing other realms of reality. The rest of the book was well done, the manipulation of Louise by Adele. I did wonder how she knew all the things about David and Louise, but it was well done. I felt all along that the disappearance of Rob was going to be an issue, but still the ending really surprised me.
    I hope you won’t mind if I link this post to my review, for others that may have read and not loved the ending. Great post Sarah!

    Posted 2.16.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I agree that the manipulation was well done and would’ve really loved the book if it had stuck to that….or hinged on that is maybe a better word. The ending wouldn’t have been as crazy, but I think there’s such a thing as too crazy.

      And of course I’d love for you to link to my post – thank you!

      Posted 2.16.17 Reply
  6. Annie wrote:

    “: Adele will trick David or Louise into killing her. She wants to die anyway and she’ll get revenge on either of them by letting them live with the guilt of killing her” I totally thought this was the case.

    I found the book really addictive but the ending was a big NO for me. Although my feelings were still positive because it had been a gripping read, the more I think about it (it’s been like 2 months) the less I like it.

    If it’s a thriller, I don’t want fantasy stuff, I was expecting something believable, I thought the whole second door thing was cheating. I wanted a real explanation!

    I don’t mind fantasy storylines WHEN all the elements are there from the beginning.

    Posted 2.17.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Glad I wasn’t the only one! I’m not a fantasy fan either and think I’d be more receptive to a plot like this in a fantasy book. But, throwing the fantasy element into a thriller…and in such an important way…felt like a gimmick to me.

      I do think Adele manipulating Louise would have made for a great thriller in and of itself. Wish she’d just focused on that.

      Posted 2.17.17 Reply
    • Vicki wrote:

      That is exactly my thoughts – Fantasy or Thriller – Not happy with the combination – But is seems this is the modern way – Television programmes are now a combination of both and I don’t really enjoy that. Good Point.

      Posted 4.8.17 Reply
    • Anne wrote:

      My sentiments exactly

      Posted 4.20.18 Reply
  7. HUH. What a deeply weird ending — I’m sorry it didn’t work for you! As my blog name implies, I like being spoiled for everything, especially if the marketing hinges around there being a big twist. I went into Gone Girl with full knowledge of the twist, and really loved it. But, hm. Okay. I kind of can’t decide if I want to read this now!

    Posted 2.17.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      So this is interesting…you love spoiling the ending. I’m curious why. Does suspense then lie in the “how” not the “what”? If so, I really love that type of suspense too.

      So, I’d be really curious about your thoughts on this one knowing the ending going in! That would be a cool perspective – hint, hint…read it!!

      Posted 2.17.17 Reply
  8. Okay, I totally scrolled to the bottom of the page, averting my eyes and singing do-wah-diddy-diddy-dum-diddy-do (like I’m hearing something, right)to skip all the spoilers to say that I’m coming back to this post next week after reading Behind Her Eyes. I’m starting it on Monday (I hope).

    Posted 2.17.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      You’re the best – can’t wait to dish when you finish!

      Posted 2.20.17 Reply
  9. I love that you wrote down your guesses! I try my best not to guess ahead when I’m reading, but I couldn’t help it with this one. I was constantly wondering, too. (That was some good marketing.) I certainly never guessed the ending here.

    I normally hate when an ending is hyped up because I spend the entire book looking forward to it being over. That’s usually not a good thing. It was fine for me in this case.

    Posted 2.18.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I usually don’t try to guess, but since the ending was so hyped in advance, I just couldn’t help it! Constantly guessing was kind of annoying, though.

      So I’m curious why did the hyped ending work for you in this case even though it normally doesn’t?

      Posted 2.20.17 Reply
  10. Greg wrote:

    This is so interesting because I’ve been seeing reviews for this and wondering if I should take the plunge. I’ve been really into psych thrillers lately. And I shouldn’t read a spoilery review but I couldn’t resist! 🙂 Maybe it’s good that I did because that ending… yeah I think I would be like no way. It just sounds too out there…

    I like your guesses though. It’s fun to do that even if we end up wrong! I had no idea lucid dreaming was a thing?? And inhabiting someone’s body through lucid dreaming seems so paranormal-ish, but I’m curious enough now that I’ll check out some of those links. I’m glad I read this, spoilers and all, so if I do read it I know what I’m getting into!

    Posted 2.18.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      So now that you now how it ends, do you think you’ll read it? I guess I do watch The Bachelor even though I read the spoiler blog!

      I had no idea lucid dreaming was a thing, either! And I learned something else about sleep behavior through Chris Bohjalian’s The Sleepwalker…big year for sleep dysfunction books..haha!

      Posted 2.20.17 Reply
      • Greg Hill wrote:

        You know, I just might. I’ve been having good luck with thrillers lately and while this one does seem a little out there with that ending, I do tend to like paranormal and SF stuff so maybe it won’t throw me too much! And I’m less likely to hate the ending if it does fall flat, since I know what to expect. 🙂

        Posted 2.20.17 Reply
  11. Veeda wrote:

    The million dollar question I had after reading this book was y in the gods name was every1 falling madly in love with david he has 2 b 1 one of the most annoying character I have ever read yet adele, louise, then even rob all r obbsessed with him lol anyway ever1 keeps on saying that all the characters were unlikable but wat about the real adele? In the past the story is frm her viewpoint n shes a very sweet character n in the end my heart went out 4 her becuz david would always hate her the 1 person she loved the most n it was very touching how davids watch falls down with robs body becuz adeles soul was attached 2 it

    Posted 2.19.17 Reply
    • Vicki Swanson wrote:

      Veeda you have made another good point – What was so special about David – And Adele wasn’t really Adele as far back as the Well, so she gets a bad rap but it was Rob all along ! Can’t get my head around this – however I still enjoyed the book – the Audio version was extremely well narrated if anyone is interested in listening to it – highly recommend that for entertainment – And along with all the rest of you – Adam’s character seemed supercilious really, and the suggestion of having him killed off upset me too.

      Posted 4.8.17 Reply
    • Gabi wrote:

      Exactly, I was thinking exactly the same! How could David be so amazing that everybody was in love with him… there could be a great 2nd book for a better ending of this story. David would see the same signs with Lousie as what he experienced with Adele and probably Adam would also tell him, his mother changed and together they would somehow figure out about lucid dreaming… It would be a much more positive book, of course, more predictable.

      Posted 11.5.18 Reply
  12. Ann Marie wrote:

    Everything, everything, everything you said. It was WTF for me in a very NOT good way… I’m so glad to hear that many of my fellow, trusted bloggers have the same opinion of this book. I felt duped and resented that this book was not categorized in the appropriate genre for the sole purpose of duping me.
    The lucid dreaming stuff was ludicrous. I am a lucid dreamer. I have vivid dreams I can recall almost every night. If I’m dreaming something truly terrifying, I can recognize it within the dream and tell myself to wake up. But that’s where it ends. I wake up. I do not see a door where I enter another dimension, switch bodies with anyone else, etc. I can’t fall asleep and observe other people.

    Posted 2.21.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      OK – thrilled to hear perspective on this from someone who actually experiences lucid dreaming. It’s a foreign concept to me, so I have zero perspective on its validity or how believable Pinborough’s take was. Though you know my initial thoughts!

      I feel like I’ve only found 1 other blogger who actually liked the ending…I think it was Amy at Read a Latte, but I could be mistaken on that. I’d love to hear from someone who reads more paranormal/fantasy…and that person is definitely not me!

      Posted 2.22.17 Reply
    • Ella wrote:

      I’d say the lucid dreaming in this book is more like astral projection. I lucid dream as well, and I can do whatever I want in my dreams. However, I can’t leave my body.

      Posted 9.15.17 Reply
  13. Lauren wrote:

    This book is starting to irk me as much as The Girl on the Train. It’s a book made by a marketing push. I have not yet heard from one person I know that they actually liked the WTF ending. To the contrary, it has rendered many of my sane reader friends insane, especially after they liked the start of the book. There’s WTF and then there’s Seriously, What The Fuck? Glad I can miss this one, thanks for the spoiler review.

    Posted 2.21.17 Reply
  14. April wrote:

    I am currently listening to the audio version of this book and it is driving me insane! I thought it would end up being that Adele is crazy as a bed bug and has something on David that could possibly make people question him being involved with the death of her parents and that is why he stays. I thought that she would continue to give Louise JUST enough evidence to convince her that David is this crazy, psychotic mastermind, but eventually either David, Sophie or even the crazy guy Anthony would put two and two together and Adele would be on the brink of being caught but would somehow kill herself. David would finally be free of Adele and he and Louise could live happily ever after.

    I have thought all along that Adele really wrote the dream book and not Rob, it was just too fishy that Adele would have it back. For a little while, I thought that it would end up being that Adele and Louise were actually the same person with split personalities for something lol. I REALLY like David though and I wanted him and Louise to end up together. I have felt all along that Adele was orchestrating the entire thing to look like the wounded, abused wife. I know that liking David makes me look like a complete schmuck, but it is what it is 🙂

    I am at the point in the book where Adele is telling Louise her suspicions about David killing Rob.

    Posted 2.21.17 Reply
  15. Jess wrote:

    Thank you thank you for posting the spoilers! I’ve fallen for all “the next Gone Girl” books in the last few years (The Girl on the Train, Behind Closed Doors), and none of them have lived up to the hype for me. I’m definitely taking a pass on this one. Thanks for saving me from some reading rage! 🙂

    Posted 2.22.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      You’re very welcome! I had avoided the trap for a long time, but this one sucked me in. Dang hashtag…I just had to know what it meant.

      Posted 2.22.17 Reply
  16. April wrote:

    Okay I just finished the book and oh my gosh!! I just can’t even wrap my head around this ending. I kinda had a feeling that there was something off about Rob. Only because there were so many references to him being in love with Adele but not wanting to have sex with her, but I was not expecting that change of events.

    I don’t think that I’ve ever wanted to smack a character the way that I wanted to smack Louise in this book and specifically at the end. Yea, I’m not really sure how I feel right now, but I definitely don’t have the, I just read a wonderful book that I love, kind of high 🙁

    Posted 2.22.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Nope – I definitely didn’t have that feeling either 🙂 I was more like – who can I rant to about this?! So I ranted in my blog post instead.

      And that’s a good point about Rob..I never really picked up on that while I was reading, but should have!

      Posted 2.22.17 Reply
  17. Julia wrote:

    Seeing Rob have his own chapter after finding out Adele tricked Louise into switching bodies, I figured the ending would be similar to The Skeleton Key and he was going to tell us David was actually Rob this entire time. But of course, the ending makes total sense now, especially considering how annoyed he was with Anthony. If anyone knows how an obsessive teen can cause trouble, it’s Rob. By far, the craziest ending I’ve ever read!

    Posted 2.23.17 Reply
  18. Sam wrote:

    I don’t read many books but when I do I mainly go for thriller or horror. I didn’t know there would be a horror/fantasy element to this book when I started it. I took a chance on it because it was a thriller that was getting positive reviews and I liked the “domestic noir” set up. I was really pleased and intrigued when the supernatural element started to emerge part way through.

    I found that the book drew me in from the start. I liked Louise and Adam and was intrigued by David and Adele and even Rob.

    I quite liked the body switching device as it really turned up the creepy factor. It affected me especially since I liked Louise and was really hoping for some kind of happy ending for her, especially after the author seemed to tease the readers with that possibility when the truth came out with David.

    Louise’s child’s fate at the end of the book was chilling – for him to have lost his mother and not even know it but be aware that something was wrong – simply awful. In a way it was too much but it was very effective from a horror perspective. Kind of like the “changeling” tales but with the parent being switched rather than the child.

    That said, I think some of the plot was poorly executed. It was utterly ridiculous to have Louise go to Adele’s house to try and use her supernatural abilities to stop Adele’s suicide attempt. And for Adele’s plan to rely on Louise doing that was doubly ridiculous. Surely by that point Louise would have just had the police go over.

    I didn’t see any indication that Adele would turn out to be a psychopath from all the “then” chapters covering Adele’s time in the recovery centre. This left me prepared to be disappointed as I approached the end of the book. As it turns out, that didn’t matter anyway after the reveal that years earlier Rob had switched into Adele’s body and killed Adele while she inhabited his body. Although that just shifted my disappointment to wondering how Rob turned into such a psychopath. From his notebook and the “then” chapters, he seemed to genuinely love Adele as a friend. I wonder if perhaps the Anthony character was an attempt by the author to set us up to find Rob more believable. Just as the addict Anthony developed an obsession David that transferred onto Adele, Rob never really loved Adele but rather had an obsession with her that transferred onto David.

    All in all, I thought the book had some great elements – the characters, and the blend of thriller and supernatural/horror really worked for me – but I think it could have been executed far better. Perhaps if it had been told in chronological order and entirely in the third person? I can’t help but wonder if a brilliantly creepy thriller-horror story was ruined by the author trying to force part of the plot into a twist ending rather than letting the story unfold normally.

    Posted 3.5.17 Reply
    • Fotini wrote:

      I never thought the whole Anthony- Rob thing. Wow

      Posted 3.29.20 Reply
  19. Michael Sullivan wrote:

    Sorry, this book is crap. The ending is a marketing gimmick. No more. No one “saw it coming” bacause it’s quite a stretch. I don’t care about these characters. It reads like a middle school fanfic…how very telling the author’s background in YA fiction.
    Shorter novel: People with very flexible morals and little self-respect need a “magic dream door” to continue their pathetic lives. People who lead such mundane lives naturally mistake this genre for clever writing. The same people who mistake hashtags and like clicks for activism. Meh.

    Posted 3.14.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I agree about the marketing gimmick…or at a minimum just a plain old gimmick. Was way too much of a stretch for me. But, bottom line, the publisher’s marketing of the ending had me curious enough to read the book.

      Posted 3.14.17 Reply
    • Vicki wrote:

      well put !

      Posted 4.8.17 Reply
  20. Jen J wrote:

    I listened to this book and quite enjoyed the narration. It was gripping, if somewhat slow. I thought I had guessed the ending because as soon as there was astral projection involved, it reminded me of a book I read as a teenager, Stranger with my Face by Lois Duncan. And the body switching (stealing) happened there. So I figured I had solved the mystery. But the Rob part I didn’t see coming. I actually liked that it surprised me.
    I was surprised also that I wasn’t more sad about Louise, but honestly she was quite naively annoying. What the heck did she think she could do to help Adele as a spririt? That move alone was so dumb I kind of felt she deserved what she got. Also, the cheating with someone’s husband wasn’t cool.
    Overall, I would probably give this 3.5 stars out of 5, and may bump it to 4 because it surprised me and held my rapt attention.

    Posted 3.24.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I think people that are comfortable with the paranormal stuff will like this ending a lot more than I did. And I was sad for Louise, but agree she was annoying and her motivations felt super weak to me.

      Posted 3.27.17 Reply
    • Roben Alarcon wrote:

      Stranger With My Face…wonderful wonderful book. It spoiled this one for me, too. lol

      Posted 4.2.17 Reply
      • Sara wrote:

        THANK YOU!!! I just finished this and figured out the astral projection thing early thanks to that book and have been scouring the internet to see if anyone else did too. Stolen plot!!

        Posted 1.18.18 Reply
    • Nicole M wrote:

      YES! Someone else remembers Stranger with My Face. I LOVED that book as a teenager. It was so good. So yes I knew right away it was astral projection Adele was talking about. Just had to give you a shout out for knowing about the Louis Duncan book too!!!

      Posted 7.11.17 Reply
      • Karen wrote:

        I still have this book from my teenage years along with several others by Lois Duncan. I Know What You Did Last Summer was a book of hers that then ended up as a film too!

        Posted 6.27.21 Reply
  21. Sonia wrote:

    I finished the book this morning and just like Jen J, I anticipated the body switch, but not the Rob angle. It’s a beach holiday book, nothing more, but it did grt us talking. As a child i used to have lucid dreams and could control them, no doors though!

    Posted 3.25.17 Reply
  22. Lori D. wrote:

    What this book is referring to is astral projection. That’s where you can willfully leave your body and go anywhere. Look it up. It’s very interesting but I don’t know that you can switch bodies. This book reminds me of the movie Fallen, with Denzel Washington. I really enjoyed this book.

    Posted 3.26.17 Reply
  23. Terry wrote:

    Perhaps because I am medically trained, I saw this book as “Sybil-like” multiple personality disorder
    This was a schizophrenic “person” who may or may not be actually married to a “David.” “Adele” was Louise, Rob and all the other characters in “Adeles” world.” In other words, Adele was narrating the entire book until the end when Rob, another of many multiple personalities came back. The ending was awful because I was waiting to find out if there was really even a David or if Rob (Adele & Louise) were sitting in a lock down facility.

    Posted 3.28.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I can see the multiple personality thing! I’ve heard similar reactions to The Girl on the Train.

      Posted 4.4.17 Reply
  24. Sheila Wigley wrote:

    There is a line in the book “If you love someone set them free – what a load of bollocks.” That describes how I feel about this book, what a load of bollocks. Will never read another one by this author. She wasted hours of my valuable time.

    Posted 3.30.17 Reply
  25. Roben Alarcon wrote:

    I found out about lucid dreaming in college, read a book on it, and began doing it right away. It is rather easy when you accept it can be done. In Behind Her Eyes, it said to pinch yourself and say, “I’m awake” or something like that, over and over. The book I read said to put note cards all around your house that say, “Am I dreaming?” so that you ask yourself that in the dream, and then realize you are. One particular day, I was dreaming that I was looking at myself sleeping in my bed. Now, I do NOT believe I was astral projecting, but it was odd and it stuck with me. SO accidentally stumbling on this book, and coming to THIS ending was very exciting for me. I know lucid dreaming is real so anything about it interests me. I don’t believe in astral projection, but ever since I read Lois Duncan’s Stranger With My Face as a teenager (like Jen J above), it has been another fun interest. This book tied all of these weird things together, and that made it a winner for me!

    Posted 4.2.17 Reply
  26. Fraser Lancaster wrote:

    Firstly I would like to register how very much I hated “Gone Girl”, I can’t understand why it is such a benchmark for most people. It is overlong and not a single character I could empathise with. Can’t even remember the leading female character’s name, but she was uremittingly chillingly spiteful and superior. Really wish I hadn’t persevered with it. At least in “Behind Her Eyes” you have characters with humanity in Louise and David. Very clever book using lucid dreaming, which does exist, I’ve actually done it at times. Don’t know about the second door, but so what. So thumbs up for “Behind Her Eyes” and thumbs very down for the horrible “Gone Girl”. Great twists at end of Behind and the probable fate of poor Adam and his instinct about his changed mother another good twist. Wonder if anyone agrees with me!

    Posted 4.15.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I actually loved Gone Girl, but I’m the type of reader that is not bothered by dislikable characters. I’ve found over time that readers kind of fall into camps of not being bothered by dislikable characters and those who feel dislikable characters can kill a book for them. Sounds like you’re in camp #2.

      I think it’s hard for someone who hasn’t heard of lucid dreaming (much less experienced it) to wrap their heads around the fact that it can actually happen.

      I did love the last part with Adam…that he immediately noticed that his mom wasn’t quite his mom. But, I was pretty horrified by Rob/Louise’s train of thought about what to do about Adam moving forward…

      Posted 4.15.17 Reply
    • Louise wrote:

      I really enjoyed this book, a little far fetched but still an original idea!
      Louise’s character annoyed me, she really was a little terrier who would let it drop, slightly unbelievable!!
      The ending really surprised me and Robs character sickend me, invasion of the body snatchers!!
      I loved that poor louise and David didn’t have their happy ending as that would of been predictable and it was bitter sweet, Adams part in the final chapter highlights that Rob will kill both him and Ian, and the cracks will again appear to show in David and ‘Louise’s’ marriage though her lack emotion of it all, and the process will begin again for Rob and he will have to spend his entire life trying to keep David no matter how many bodies he snatches!! Very grim!

      Posted 9.9.18 Reply
  27. Madeline wrote:

    I loved Gone Girl. I don’t mind despicable characters and a little evil can certainly enliven a story.

    While paranormal activity is not usually my thing, I enjoyed Behind Her Eyes. The whole “out of body” thing was brought into the story fairly slowly with lucid dreaming discussed first. The coincidence that Louise would have night terrors was a mud puddle in an otherwise fairly sound plot. Even Adele’s black eye was explained at the end.

    I certainly didn’t see the end coming and it definitely sent a shiver up my spine. I wasn’t happy with the animal abuse however.

    But overall I thought it was well done and the ending worked for me. I like thrillers that foreshadow more things to come!

    Posted 4.20.17 Reply
  28. Michelle wrote:

    I’m so glad I stumbled upon your blog. After just completing this book I immediately thought “WTF”, and that I needed to talk to someone about it.

    Totally agree with others on this post… the saddest part of this book was that Adam would be growing up without his mother. The relationship that the author built up between Louise and Adam was really adorable.

    My biggest frustration was with Louise. In the final scene, when Adele sent Louise that text message, I was screaming at my book “DONT GO OVER THERE. CALL THE COPS.”
    When Louise arrived at Adele’s house and saw the flames I was screaming “ARE YOU AN IDIOT. CALL THE COPS.” I hate to say that Louise had it coming, but she really could have handled that better.

    I was pretty upset when “Adele” took over Louise’s body… but when I found out it was actually Rob, I felt a little bit better about it. I’m not sure why though… anyone else feel this way?

    In ranking these “thriller/mystery” books I’ve read recently – I would have to say this one was my least favorite. I think the paranormal aspect of it was pretty off-putting. The ending is unexpected… because I was expecting an ending that could actually happen!

    Anyways – rankings of recent thrillers read:

    1. The Woman in Cabin 10
    2. Gone Girl
    3. Girl on the train (I actually really sympathized with the main character in this one)
    4. Behind Closed Doors (The main character drove me CRAZY, but I loved the ending on this one)
    5. The Couple Next Door
    6. Behind her Eyes (it was OK until that ending. Ruined it for me. People switching bodies?? Nope.)

    Any other recommendations for similar books from anyone? Thanks!

    Posted 4.20.17 Reply
    • Nicole M wrote:

      Thank you for recommending Behind Closed Doors. I absolutely loved it! One of the best books I’ve read this year.

      Posted 7.19.17 Reply
  29. Just finished and like others needed an outlet for my “WTF!?” I loved the book, and sure the ending wasnt very nice, but that doesn’t cancelled out the rapt attention and enjoyment I had while reading it.

    I was MUCH MORE angry at the ending if the Dexter series on tv

    Posted 4.26.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I’m glad the ending didn’t ruin it for you! It kind of did for me…

      Posted 5.3.17 Reply
  30. Yael wrote:

    Very mixed feelings. The book is captivating. The kind you can’t put down. The ending is surprising. But there a few things that bothered me. First, the idea that Rob is the “bad guy” hinges on two things: His class background (he’s the poor kid, the drug addict, lives on a crummy esate with a sister who is “lazy” and lives on wellfare) and he’s a homosexual. The twist at the end loosely hangs on these two premises. So the “Then” chapters where we see a friendship between two teeanged “freaks” (guess that has to do with the fact that the author’s previous novels belong to the YA category) which seemed so genuine are revealed as somehow fake just by the virtue of Rob’s sudden infatuation with David.
    The book is a curious mix of genres. It’s very “realistic” on the one hand, providing very mintue details of everday life, down to very British brands like Morrisons Sainsbury and Costa but its main premise is the idea of body swapping. This could have been a way to discuss psychological issues but the book doesn’t do that. We have “Adele” the madwoman, right out of a Gothic novel, but then it’s not really “her”. So why should “Rob” try so hard to act mad? If he wants David so much, why should he keep up the act? This just doesn’t make any sense.

    Posted 4.29.17 Reply
  31. Care wrote:

    I liked it overall; I thought the beginning hinted at much-eyerolling adventures. I learned to like Louise enough even if I hated her decisions. I didn’t trust David. For a psychiatrist, he was just not professional! I guess I hold doctors and lawyers to a higher standard. Drinking at work? Really? Anyway, I kept wondering how Rob was going to play into the story and how “Adele” kept saying s/he loved David so much, that he needed to be released from the past. Also, we never really do get into the true Adele’s head, do we? the THEN passages all being in third person? Maybe I am misremembering already. I guessed the switching but I admit the Rob chapter had me amused and gave a sense of dramatic satisfaction. All the little clues were then obvious and well-played, imo. Louise SHOULD have called the cops. She made way too many stupid decisions and David was a coward drunk. I gave it 3 stars – I really don’t like these thrillers very much. I hated We Were Liars, Girl on the Train annoyed me. I somehow loved Gone Girl.
    Thanks for hosting a Spoiler page!

    Posted 5.9.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Have you ever read All is Not Forgotten? A similar type of psychiatrist is in that one.

      And that’s so true – I hadn’t thought of it that way – the entire time we thought we were getting Adele, we were actually getting Rob. Except during the early mental hospital years.

      Posted 5.11.17 Reply
  32. Bill wrote:

    Sorry, I’m late to this party but I loved Loved LOVED the book AND the ending. I’m willing suspend my disbelief, and okay with it when a character tends toward evil. I read they’re trying to sell the movie rights. SO many people they bring in to pre-screen movies scream “CHANGE THE ENDING!” because they want things to be neat and tidy and happy. I hope they don’t do that. Louise and Adele are dead and Rob already plotting to kill Adam and probably his father. he’s psychotic and it’s deliciously evil. it’s a beach read. and a captivating one at that. it’s probably good that we’re all over the place regarding the ending. she’s got us talking!

    Posted 5.30.17 Reply
  33. Nicola Girolami wrote:

    Absolutely loved this book…I knew from the start that it was a psychological thriller but never imagined the paranormal horror element would come into it! The last bit about killing Louise’s son is chilling. The fact that Rob has taken over first Adele and then Louise is terrifying. I sure hope Sarah Pinborough writes a sequel in which Rob (inside Louise’s body) finally gets his/her just deserts. Opinions welcome

    Posted 6.13.17 Reply
  34. Elaine wrote:

    Thank you for posting a spoiler blog. I needed to hear from others who also hated the ending. I read a fair amount of fantasy, but the problem was that it was not an effective suspension of disbelief. The body switching just seemed tacked on, and not organic to the rest of the story. I just kept expecting the body switching to be part of Adele’s psychosis, and that the ironic twist would be that David stumbled into another relationship with someone psychotic. I also wondered if the twist would be that David and Adele were secretly plotting together against Louise, because you never get David’s perspective. I didn’t get the hype over Gone Girl. I found the ending really annoying, and then got just as annoyed when I watched the movie on cable.
    For a fantastic plot twist, I recommend Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian. This author is hit or miss for me but I LOVED this one.

    Posted 6.24.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I LOVED Double Bind and love most things Chris Bohjalian writes!

      Posted 6.25.17 Reply
  35. Elaine wrote:

    Also recommended: Stone Mattress is a collection of short stories by Margaret Atwood. The short story called Stone Mattress is a great example of a mystery with a plot twist. And Freeze Dried Groom.

    Posted 6.24.17 Reply
  36. tesalonica wrote:

    I just finished the book. I saw the first twist coming, but not the second.
    When I started reading about Louise travelling in her lucid dreams, I knew it was all a plot deviced by Adele to get Louise’s body. why? because a few weeks ago my brother told me about a movie, very similar to “The Skeleton Key” with kate hudson, where the character’s body is inhabited by the mind of somebody else. I have no idea which movie they were referring to, but that gave me the idea of what was going on with the book. The second twist, Rob being Adele, I didn’t see it coming at all.
    Regarding the book, I just couldn’t understand why Louise was sooo stupid. Doing everything Adele wanted, and acting irrationaly. Her drinking really bothered me. Why was she so protective of the wife of the man she was sleeping with?? crazy. I don’t know, I got so mad at her to the point where I just didn’t give a S***t what happened to her. I didn’t care if Adele inhabited her body and sent her to a mental institution for good. She deserved it for being really really stupid. And jeopardizing her own integrity, and her sons, for trying to save the crazy psycho wife of the man she was sleeping with.
    Regarding lucid dreaming, I had read about it when I first learned about sleep paralysis. There is also something else called astral projection or something like that, which is what I think they were doing in the book. I don’t believe in it of couse, and I think it’s impossible to do that, but well, not all books have to be based on reality, there can be some fantasy in them.

    Posted 6.25.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I knew nothing about lucid dreaming when I read this, but probably would have bought into the storyline more if I had.

      Posted 6.28.17 Reply
  37. Jamaicanbea_uty wrote:

    I realize I’m late to the party commenting on this, but I actually missed all of the PR on this book (to be perfectly honest, I miss the PR on most books, including Gone Girl), but I read the description and was intrigued. I read it over the last week and loved every moment of it and kept urging my older sister that it is such an amazing read. Then the last two chapters ruined it.

    Now I’ve spent the last two days thinking over the book and finding other issues I didn’t like. Louise for one thing was weirdly involved and I get that Adel was manipulating the situation, but from the moment she insisted on a tour of Louise’s home and said something along the lines of “the power is in the details” I knew something was wrong with her.

    The part about getting rid of Adam also bothered me a lot. I’m also bothered that there was no logical reasoning in Louise going to save Adel and the reality that the book is written as three points of view, but really has only two and we never know anything real about Adel is so off.

    It’s a riveting read that apparently lives up to the PR and the hashtag, but it’s ending being so far from has left me feeling like I was on a rollercoaster that broke down in the middle of a huge hill. It felt out of place and wrong.

    Posted 8.26.17 Reply
  38. Laurie wrote:

    I have just finished this book and I am doing what I normally do after a controversial ending of a book or film and I am straight on the internet looking for people’s opinions or explanations on it. Honestly I do not read a lot of books. It’s not that I don’t enjoy them, I do, but it’s to the extent that I will not put a book down until I’m finished and normally get through them in a night or a day or so. So after a couple of months after my last book (The one) which I loved,I seen this in my supermarket (had no idea of the hype until I searched for it after finishing) I decided to try this one as I love thrillers and was intrigued by the #wtfending and all the reviews on the inside cover praising the ending. I do enjoy a twist and I am one of they people that have to guess what’s going to happen before its revealed, which I normally do. Now I’m assuming it’s because of the massive build up to the mystery ending that I actually developed what could only be described as anxiety and stress while reading this book! I was actually struggling to read it as all I could think about was getting to the end. I was actually finding myself taking breaks from it and considering skipping to the end to put myself out of my misery! The ending was unexpected but mostly because I thought the book was a thriller but thinking about the second door it seems plausible for a fantasy genre. I didn’t mind it, but I have to say the last chapter Rob kind of saved it for me. Made the rest of the book seem kind of clever (if you can get over the fantasy element of it) and overall the fact I hadn’t guessed it was coming like the majority of the time made it worth while I suppose. The one major MAJOR thing I just cannot get over is the main character Louise! It’s like watching a horror film and shouting ‘DONT GO IN THERE’ constantly as they stupidly walk into a house unarmed when they know there’s a killer in there. If David turned out to be a control freak the relationship with (the real) Louise would be over in a week. She does not listen! Stay away from her, don’t contact her. Go stay at a hotel. I feel sorry for the fact I was expecting a happy ending, but did she really deserve it? Especially putting her child at risk? Was hard to sympathise with her after that. Even after her out of body experience watching Adele lying in the bed, why feel the need to try and enter her body and walk her out the house? Why not return to her own and call the emergency services? Why was she risking her own life to save a physcopath? I have never left a review before and I haven’t even read the date on this post so don’t even know how old it is and realise I have wrote a short novel myself. But this book, mainly the annoying disobedient character has forced me to rant somewhere!

    Posted 9.10.17 Reply
  39. Jo wrote:

    Did I see the ending coming? No. Does this make it a great book? No. Was it laboured, far fetched and ridiculous- without a doubt. Most of the content of this book has been covered in other books to far better effect (damaged marriages, the incorrect conclusions people jump to when they get involved in them etc). I can only assume that the ‘wtf’ hashtag was an incredulous publisher wondering why on earth they were printing this dross.

    Posted 10.7.17 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Agreed – surprise does not in and of itself make an ending good

      Posted 10.10.17 Reply
      • Robin wrote:

        Hi Sarah,
        I got half way thru the book and couldn’t finish. But I would really love a detailed synopsis of the book, from you or anyone else who has a few minutes to spare. the spoilers here are still leaving me guessing ant exactly what happened. I love spoilers and I can rarely find them! Most ppl are very conscientious abt it! Lol. Please help me out! I’m not going to torture myself with reading the rest, but my curiosity is eager to understand d the details of the last half of the book. Thanks?

        Posted 3.30.18 Reply
        • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

          Hi Robin – honestly, it’s been so long since I read this that I couldn’t give you a detailed synopsis, but maybe someone else reading these comments can pipe in?

          Posted 4.11.18 Reply
  40. Lisa wrote:

    One of my guesses in the beginning was that David and Adele were incestuous, brother and sister. But then I realized that was a “no” from the stories of their childhoods.
    I wasn’t happy with the ending either. But it was kind of already done in The Skeleton Key, which I really liked.

    Posted 10.9.17 Reply
  41. Jennifer wrote:

    The Adam thing, even though he wasn’t much of a present character he was necessary for later parts in the book. He showed more depth of Louise and adds to the background d. Also, it shows just how dispicable Rob is

    Posted 1.1.18 Reply
  42. Chris wrote:

    Just finished. Did not see the Rob thing coming. Early on I thought Adele and Louise might be the same person. Then I thought David was the bad guy. I did think Adele was going to kidnap Adam and take him to the estate as a hostage. This was because of Louise’s (early in the book) night terrors where she was “running through corridors” trying to get to Adam. Showdown ensues and Adele ends up in the well with Rob. I did get the sense that Adele was “preparing Louise’s body” for something like in a Twilight Zone episode. Did not see the end coming. I didn’t like that Adam is in danger. My corridor running ending justified his character but with him sent to Dads house he became superfluous. The book was recommended to me after I spoke about reading Gone Girl and Girl on the Train with a friend.

    Posted 1.8.18 Reply
  43. Hanah wrote:

    There was no real mention throughout the book of Rob having any sort of fascination with David which I think made the ending a bit far fetched. To me it would have made more sense that they pitched is as an obsession with Adele that he wanted to be her, rather than be with David.

    Posted 1.9.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I think I agree 🙂

      Posted 1.14.18 Reply
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  45. Natalie wrote:

    I know this blog post is a bit old but I just finished Behind Her Eyes after not being able to put it down. I liked Louis so much as a protagonist and was rooting for her the entire time. Then suddenly boom – the book jumped from thriller to eye-rolling paranormal story. I like to choose what I read based on genre. Had I known this story would involve ASTRAL PROJECTION and soul/body swapping, I never would’ve picked it up. It feels like a cheap, cop out ending for what could’ve been a really riveting thriller set 100% in REALITY. I was very disappointed.

    Posted 3.13.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      You and I are 100% in agreement!! And, this post may be old, but it’s still in my top 3 performing posts every single month, so lots of people are still visiting it 🙂

      Posted 3.14.18 Reply
  46. Lauren Cummings wrote:

    After the first 2 chapters I read the ending and analyzed it . I am now reading the book and it makes perfect sense when you already know that the real Adel never Survived leaving the facility as a teenager . The Adel we know in the book beyond her time in the facility is Rob . The original Adel never even met Louise . When you read the book knowing Adel is Rob it’s a different experience. It helps to have an understanding of the actual facts as the events unfold .I’m not finished it yet but my intrigue is not about what happens but about how it happened and how the author brings it all together .

    Posted 3.16.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I do think it would be interesting to go back and read it again knowing the ending. But, too many book too little time!

      Posted 3.17.18 Reply
      • Lauren wrote:

        I definitely couldn’t read the whole thing twice ! I’ve found the bit where david explains that Robs death happened at Adels parents estate not at the facility so must correct that part of my original comment. Even knowing most of the facts I’m still really enjoying the book . It’s just very sad that Adel, David and Louise are all really nice people and Rob ruins all of their lives .

        Posted 3.18.18 Reply
  47. Rebecca Burke wrote:

    Call me stupid but I’m still a bit unclear as to how Adele’s parents died in the fire did Adele start it?

    Posted 3.17.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      It’s been so long since I read it that I’ve forgotten now! I think Adele did start it? Hopefully someone else reading this post can answer your question definitively?!

      Posted 3.17.18 Reply
    • Fotini wrote:

      No Adele didn’t start the fire.It is mentioned in the end.

      Posted 3.29.20 Reply
  48. Lauren wrote:

    The fire was accidental. Adele loved her parents . She felt guilty for being out of her body during the fire and unable to help them . Most of the Adele parts of the book are Rob in Her body. That’s why she appears crazy . Apart from the sleep issues and grief for her parents, Adele was normal before she was murdered in Robs body.

    Posted 3.18.18 Reply
  49. I was genuinely shocked by the ending. However, it IMMEDIATELY made me think of the 2005 movie, “The Skeleton Key” with Kate Hudson. Anyone else?

    Posted 4.2.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I haven’t seen that movie, but would probably hate it if the ending is similar to Behind Her Eyes!

      Posted 4.11.18 Reply
  50. Robin wrote:

    Hi Sarah,
    I got half way thru the book and couldn’t finish. But I would really love a detailed synopsis of the book, from you or anyone else who has a few minutes to spare. the spoilers here are still leaving me guessing ant exactly what happened. I love spoilers and I can rarely find them! Most ppl are very conscientious abt it! Lol. Please help me out! I’m not going to torture myself with reading the rest, but my curiosity is eager to understand d the details of the last half of the book. Thanks?

    Posted 4.3.18 Reply
  51. Jack wrote:

    I’ve just read this book. I wasn’t overly impressed with the ending, which is a shame. I thought it could really be going somewhere but as soon I twigged that they were leaving their bodies I started to not really like where it might go. I’m not a huge fan of the spiritual side of things, I just like a good old psychopathic murderer.

    In terms of lucid dreaming, I’ve actually had dreams that I’ve realised were dreams and subsequently done loads of weird stuff in them. So I can say that it definitely is a thing.

    I thought the twist would be a lot of the options mentioned above, all I think are better than what actually happened.

    Posted 5.10.18 Reply
  52. Sharon Maisela wrote:

    Great read!
    Absolutely hated Louise’s alcoholism. She’s the one that seemed psychopathic, considering how easy it was for Adele/Rob to control her.
    She wasn’t that great of a parent, I actually used to forget she had a son with all those irrational decisions.
    Definitely didn’t see that rob twist coming, felt like a slap in the face really. Still don’t know how I feel about the book especially after going through these comments.
    I did enjoy it though, liked the lucid dreaming element because I experience it often, but the door gibberish took it to another level.
    There were plenty of eye rolling moments, Rob was absolutely disgusting, David? David who? All I remember is that he was an unhappy drunk, he was like an extra in this book. Poor Adele, is all I can say about her.
    I enjoyed the book though.
    Absolutely love gone girl.

    Posted 6.23.18 Reply
  53. Linda wrote:

    I loved the book but was so disappointed with the ending. I wonder if this was because I wanted a happy ending for Louise and Adam. I do question however what would have been the result if the police had carried out a DNA test on the body in the well? If they had, perhaps there could have been a follow up book.

    Posted 7.30.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Me too 🙂 I didn’t need a happy one…just one that was less outlandish.

      Posted 8.8.18 Reply
  54. Susan wrote:

    I read the book with no idea that it had a WTF twist, so was really thrown. The whole “lucid dreaming” where people could leave their bodies and see what is happening elsewhere was too over the top for me as it is, so the final twist really did me in. I will say this, though – the book did keep my attention as I tried to figure out the twists ahead of time (but I was thinking within the bounds of physically possible things, so could never have solved the mystery) and – if you go back and re-read Adele’s chapters (not the “before” chapters where it is really Adele, but the ones where we now know it is actually Rob) and read them thinking in Rob’s voice – it kind of works, at least for the few I tried, and that is really very cleverly done.

    Posted 8.9.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I was thinking within the realm of physical possibility too and I wish it had stayed that way!

      Posted 8.20.18 Reply
  55. Arthur Saginian wrote:

    My wife got me the book a couple of weeks ago – she knows I’m mental and she lovingly indulges my appetite for such demented things. It’s a real page-turner, I must say that for it. Although the plot twist had me yelling “Wow!”, part of me thought it was a bit too easy to just explain it all away as “Adele was really Rob the whole time” and had been planning all of this for years. I suddenly remember the 2005 movie The Skeleton Key – very similar stuff about taking over bodies.

    All in all, though, I see a kind of moral in the story. Resourceful people who are driven usually get what they want out of life at the expense of others – using the weaknesses (or humanness) of others as a means to an end. As a secondary note – stay out of other peoples’ lives unless you’re a licensed clinician…and even then it can get weird.

    Well-written, but disappointing ending, for me.

    Thanks for the opportunity to share my thoughts here.

    Posted 8.29.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I’m with you – felt like an easy cop-out.

      Posted 8.31.18 Reply
  56. Arthur Saginian wrote:

    By the way, I not only knew about 1) lucid dreaming and 2) out of body experiences before I read the book I have frequently accomplished the first and “think” I have experienced the second.

    The lucid dreaming is cool. You “know” you’re in a dream. I’ve jumped off many ledges just for fun and caused mayhem at supermarkets and other public places. I used it to mostly do crazy stuff like that. The two out of bodies were identical to each other. First there is a rushing sound like white water rapids, then you’re sucked out and float near the ceiling. Both times I went floating around my neighborhood. My two dogs “felt” me and started barking at me in the back yard. I also ran into a couple who appeared to be doing the same thing cause they saw me and waved. Dropping back into my body was with the same rushing water sound and literally bouncing awake, much like in the book. I haven’t had it happen since. I guess I don’t really need to do it or lost interest in it.

    Crazy stuff for normal people. I’m not normal.

    Posted 8.29.18 Reply
  57. Arthur Saginian wrote:

    Rob: Driven and resourceful

    David: Weak
    Adele: Naive and lost
    Louise: Selfish with no self-control

    Posted 8.29.18 Reply
  58. Maria wrote:

    I bought this book from a charity shop wanting to read a good thriller. I really got into it and couldn’t put the bloody book down. The dreaming and controlling your dreams didn’t seem mad to me as I suffer from night terrors myself and I can now realise when I am dreaming and tell myself I am and slowly wake myself up. But the whole second door thing and swapping bodies had me going WTF! What started out so well was now going downhill. And then the final Rob chapter…. now what I did think when reading earlier that Rob had died because Adele killed him because she found out Rob loved David more than her after them meeting (as earlier in ththe book Rob was disgusted at the thought sleeping with Adele). Adele then becomes jealous because he is her best friend so she kills him. So that was my theory lol. But I literally threw my book across the room shouting “ewwwww” with the final paragraph about Adam. That was just horrible to know what was planned next and as a mother myself that completely ruined the whole book for me. A shame too as this book could have been amazing.

    Posted 9.17.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Oh man, that last paragraph was so cringe-worthy!

      Posted 9.25.18 Reply
  59. Beatriz wrote:

    I also wanted to see what was the hype with this novel. The ending. But thebeginning chapters were not intriguing enough to make me want to pick up the book and continue reading. So, I just skipped to the ending chapters and I’m glad I didnt invest more time reading this book. What the hell is this “lucid dreams” not my style. Next book.please.

    Posted 10.17.18 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Agreed! SO not my style!

      Posted 10.19.18 Reply
  60. Elizabeth wrote:

    Remind me- how does Louise admit to Adele that she works for David? I can’t remember this and I can’t find it!

    Posted 11.7.18 Reply
    • Chris wrote:

      She tells her when they first meet. Adele says something like, “Oh you work with David”, and Louise is happy she says “with” and not “for”.

      Posted 11.8.18 Reply
  61. Chris wrote:

    I think it’s funny that some people wanted to throw the book after finding out the ending. That’s what makes it a great book! I enjoyed it very much and was surprised by the twist! I listened to it on audiobook and I didn’t know there was a twist. After I listened once, I listened to the whole book again to see what I missed! Loved it!

    Posted 11.8.18 Reply
  62. Dream wrote:

    This book was so good, don’t know what you all are complaining about. The mystical element played well into keeping you guessing on what was going to happen. The ending went down a weird rabbit hole but was surprising and entertaining to read. Not much more you can ask for. Refreshing to read a different novel, will be reading more of this author.

    Posted 11.22.18 Reply
  63. E wrote:

    I’m so late to this discussion – haha! My apologies, but I just finished this book and I had to comment because when reading the last chapter, my primary thought was, “does the author have kids?” Because parents just can’t get on board with that ending. For Adam’s sake!! He was the only reason I even cared about Louise’s fate. She made all kinds of bad decisions but I wanted things to turn out okay — for Adam!!! I enjoyed the book until the end, and could buy into the whole body switch thang, if not for the torrent of hard to believe coincidences and bad decisions on the part of our “protagonist.”

    Posted 1.1.19 Reply
  64. CM wrote:

    I just finished this book on audio and I really enjoyed it. Yes, being a mother myself, the ending was disturbing, but then again you have to think maybe she will just cut ties and have Ian take full custody of Adam. After all, Adam isn’t hers/his so she has no emotional ties to the boy so let his dad have him. He’ll just have to figure out a way to make that happen so it’s not so obvious she’s giving him up. What got to me more than anything was the mention of possibly having her own child.

    Secondly, the outer body stuff is what makes it interesting. That was the aha moment when you think so that’s how she was able to know that David and Louise were sleeping together. Come on guys it is fiction you can’t take it too seriously. I really feel sorry for David because he just can’t get away from her/him.

    I am a big fan of psychological thrillers and this book was right up my alley. If I had to rate it I’d give it 6.5 out to 10 stars, and that’s because everyone had such an adverse reaction to the ending. I would definitely read/listen to this author’s work again.

    Posted 1.9.19 Reply
  65. Barbara Jane Dempsey wrote:

    Wow, I am REALLY late to the party but better late than never! This book had so many pluses for me: Short chapters, realistic characters, multiple voice and was a page turner to be sure. I am a writer myself so I do not mind unlikeable characters. In some strange way I find them even more compelling. And I do not enjoy books that are tied up neatly like a birthday present at the end. That is unrealistic, but most people seem to crave that. I was surprised at the ending – didn’t see that one coming. I figured Adele suffered from a DID disorder and may have been drugging Louise (All that wine, LOL) and Louise might have been suffering from an unnatural obsession with David (No one is THAT good looking to put up with all that crap). A normal woman probably would have moved on much sooner, especially since their relationship didn’t seem that deep. Anyways, I would recommend this book and will gladly read another of Sarah’s books.

    Posted 4.12.19 Reply
  66. Rosie wrote:

    I just read this book because of the blurb recommending it by Stephen King and I’m so unsettled, annoyed, disappointed by the ending. Louise’s character turned me off from the start because she was sleeping with the husband of someone she considered a friend and I found the choices she made as a mother really questionable. I would not have wanted to expose my child to a sociopath’s wrath, no matter how great David was in bed. Then she actually risked her life in a fire for someone so crazy? The Rob character was really unappealing from the beginning and I wondered what the real Adele liked about him. Why would David be okay with her staying on a remote estate alone with a male junkie? What happened during the private conversation Rob and David had (maybe he came on to him?) and if so, why would David still leave Adele alone with him? She seemed so sweet and innocent and it’s honestly a shame that she and David didn’t get to live the happy life she deserved. The lucid dreaming and body switching required a little too much suspension of disbelief. One of my early guesses about the ending was that David and Rob had somehow switched places, which I guess wasn’t that far off, but I never thought it would be a supernatural type event. My final problem was with Adam. He shouldn’t have been written into the story. The final suggestion that he may be killed off ruined the entire book for me and was unnecessary. My only hope is that Adam may go choose to live with his dad or dad will see what a bad mom Louise has become and take custody of him. Or maybe David sees the signs and gets him to his father before it’s too late.It’s not necessary to kill Adam off. In my ending beyond the ending, I also imagine that David kills himself and spoils Rob’s happy ending.

    Posted 7.21.19 Reply
  67. Janet wrote:

    Hi, I’m also totally late to this party 🙂 This is due to the fact, that it took me almost a year to finish this book, which is really unusual since I finished books like Girl on the Train or anything else by Paula Hawkins within a month at max.

    This book though was really dragging for me. Throughout the book, I knew there had to be a HUGE twist at the end, otherwise I would’ve put it aside for good a long time ago. This “huge” twist didn’t happen for me though. Although I didn’t think of this “body-swapping”-thing, I wasn’t really impressed and I really feel you when you talk about the WTF-moment. I was actually a little bit let down by this ending, because it’s so absurd. I usually like absurd stuff, but not something this weird and unsettling.

    Well, long story short, this book might as well have been written as a short story and it would’ve been the same to me, maybe less dragging..

    Anyways, I’m looking forward to read some other books by Sarah but I won’t be recommending this one..

    Posted 9.2.19 Reply
  68. Ellen wrote:

    Okay, is it too late to comment!? I’ve never been so disturbed by the ending of a book. Made me feel like the entire book was a waste.

    I thought that Louise was going to momentarily occupy Adele’s body, REWRITE the letter Adele had written (I presumed it was written to incriminate him, so Louise-in-Adele was going to save the day and re-write it based off her faith and love in David), and then jump back into her own body to live happily ever after with David. Alas. I did not get the ending I wanted.

    And if one body switch wasn’t enough, we had to add that Adele was not actually Adele, but instead a homosexual Rob? Say what?! What a mess.

    If a book’s value is based off its ability to shock, well, this one gets an A. But that’s all I’ll give it.

    Posted 5.9.20 Reply
  69. Debbie wrote:

    Thank you! I almost needed someone to tell me it was ok to not be ok with that ending.. it just felt so uncomfortable after investing in characters and plot, I liked that you were always guessing the truth of “then” and how Adele showed the importance of different versions of the “truth” to different people and was really in to the book right up until the twist and similarly wanted to throw the book away in my disappointment.. Also! Both Rob and Anthony just happen to be obsessives who can change the focus of their obsession in the blink of an eye.. I would even have taken “Rob made a move on David that night and it ended in a tragic scuffle” over the ending we got.

    If you could inhabit another’s body while lucid dreaming do you not think the fact someone else could do it you, particularly a proven crazy and liar, if Louise knew Adele wasn’t in her body then why bother trying to save her?

    Argh I could go on all day! Really disappointed.

    Posted 5.26.20 Reply
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    Posted 1.23.21 Reply
  71. MARGERY Charisse JONES wrote:

    I read Behind Her Eyes a few yrs ago and now I watched the series on netflix. Now I am wondering how the fire started in Adele’s house when her parents died. The series did not go into detail.

    Posted 3.2.21 Reply
  72. Renee Bueckert wrote:

    I watched Behind Her Eyes on Netflix and absolutely LOVED the twisted ending. Of course it’s not realistic, it’s fiction… It had me on the edge of my seat.

    Posted 4.3.21 Reply
  73. Sean McPartlin wrote:

    As a parent I was made so mad with the ending. If she was not a mother? The ending was fine. I had zero issues with the how. My issue was thinking of the son and what his life was going to be like. If I met the Author I would say very rude things to them. Was it a horror/shock to me? Yes but not for the right reasons. I hope The son finds out about rob and kills him/her. Thats the only way I could put this story behind me,

    Posted 12.22.21 Reply

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