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24 Hours

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Here today. Dead tomorrow?
My best friend, Emily, is dead – killed last night in a hotel fire.

But it was meant to be me.
Now I have 24 hours to find my daughter.
Before he finds out I’m still alive.

24 Hours is a fast-paced, intelligent psychological thriller that will leave you breathless.

What reviewers are saying about Claire Seeber…
‘A dark, twisting thriller that shows all too well how you can never escape the sins of your past.’ Simon Kernick
'I read a lot of books, but I can't remember the last time I was so involved in one…why aren't more thrillers so…thrilling?' MyShelf.com
‘Fans of crime writer Nicci French will enjoy this.’ Closer Magazine
‘An intense psychological thriller’ OK! Magazine
‘Fragile Lie is a good, tense read that will keep you guessing until the final pages.' Reviewing the Evidence
‘An intense and surprising psychological thriller – Fragile Minds kept me turning the pages late into the night’ Meg Gardiner

300 pages, ebook

First published October 9, 2015

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Claire Seeber

11 books197 followers

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5 stars
561 (27%)
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708 (34%)
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560 (27%)
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145 (7%)
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71 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 173 reviews
Profile Image for Jan.
423 reviews248 followers
February 16, 2016
I was pretty excited to read this one, I mean, look at that title! 'An intense, suspenseful, psychological thriller' is added right after it....so it has to be, right?? Wrong....though not from a lack of trying.

The story unfolds with the protagonist Laurie, suddenly in a race to find her daughter after her friend is killed in a hotel fire. A fire she thinks was meant for her...she's on the run, in fear for her life as well as the well being of her daughter.
What starts out as a strong premise, soon became mucked up quickly with the author throwing everything in but the kitchen sink.

With chapters dedicated to the past that lead up to present day, various characters are introduced and sub plots are formed to confuse the reader and make it more difficult to guess who the antagonist is. Only it didn't work for me.

Early on I figured out who the true antagonist was. I say 'true', because there were more than one shady character involved, and I just didn't like any of the characters, including the protag.
The back and forth between past and present was often jarring and confusing.
And the twist/big reveal was something I figured out early on as well.

While hoping for something more, it's not the worst book I've read, and it does read quickly with short chapters coming in just under 300 pages. Just don't buy into that title...it's a trap!!

ARC provided by NetGalley
Profile Image for Sue.
1,315 reviews5 followers
November 15, 2015
“24 Hours” by Claire Seeber,is a fast paced, psychological thriller, that is sure to please, because the action doesn’t stop, and you are on the edge of your seat drawn in by all the suspense.

Here today. Dead tomorrow?

My best friend, Emily, is dead – killed last night in a hotel fire.

But it was meant to be me.

Now I have 24 hours to find my daughter.

Before he finds out I’m still alive.

Laurie has escaped from a fire that has killed her best friend Emily. She believes that the fire was started … to kill her instead but she doesn’t know why. Now a race against time, avoiding the police, to find her mother and daughter. But who could she trust along the way?

The novel is brilliantly set up alternating chapters between “THEN” and NOW, increasing the suspense level. The “NOW” refers to the 24 hour period as Laurie races to find her daughter,Polly.The “THEN” provides to flesh out the characters, and give background to the story. And this method works well in this novel.

I don't want to give anything away in terms of plot. There were so many twists and turns and red herrings that I wasn't expecting the truth when it came. I was very surprised!

I loved 1 particular quote in the novel by Kierkegaard:
“We have to live life forward, but can only understand it backwards.”

Thank you to the author and the publisher for providing me with a complimentary copy via NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review.
Profile Image for Chelsea *Slowly Catching Up* Humphrey.
1,390 reviews77.2k followers
December 6, 2015
Thanks Netgalley for my copy

3.5 stars

Pros- This was a really quick read. Perfect for a beach trip! The story held my interest until the end and kept me turning the pages quickly. I love the cover art and the title- does it get any better?! I liked that the story is told through chapters beginning in the past and leading up to the present. I appreciated the effort made to throw off the reader with red herrings from knowing the "big reveal" too soon.

Cons- Unfortunately, those red herrings didn't work for me. I knew early on who the big villain was and could see the climax coming too soon. This might be different for some others though and in that case, I think I would have enjoyed this book more and given it a higher rating. I think the title also was a bit misleading as I did not find it extremely "intense" or "suspenseful".

Overall, not a bad little read but glad I didn't pay for a copy.
Profile Image for Gary.
2,550 reviews356 followers
November 6, 2015
I decided to read this book after seeing many of my Goodread friends giving such favourable reviews. I had never heard of either the book or the author previously but having read the description I was interested to give it a try.

The main character Laurie escapes from a fire that kills her best friend Emily. Thinking that the fire was started deliberately in an unsuccessful attempt to kill Laurie decides to go on the run while she tries to work out who she can trust. What follows is a 24 hour journey with Laurie. The book also flashes back to before the fire and tells of Laurie's relationship with her ex husband Sid.

The book is certainly a page turner and I found it a quick enjoyable read. There are plenty of suspects and plenty of twists and turns to keep you on the edge of your seat. Needless to say, once you start reading this book it is hard to put it down

I would like to thank Net Galley and Bookouture for giving me a copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.
Profile Image for Liz Barnsley.
3,385 reviews977 followers
October 27, 2015
24 Hours ranks up amongst the best thrillers I've read in 2015 - and thats saying something because I've read a lot of them. Its been the year of the psychological thriller, some good, some terrible, some simply enjoyable then one or two that have been truly excellent because they offer something more for me as a reader than surface entertainment. 24 Hours is one of those.

On the one hand, this is a page turning, tension inducing race against time - We spend 24 hours with Laurie as she races across country, desperate to reach her daughter before her ex-husband - who she believes is trying to kill her. Suffering both mentally and physically from the aftermath of a fire that has just killed her best friend, many obstacles are thrown in her path, not least her own inability to focus. This makes for some great edge of the seat moments, some intriguing twist and turns and creates the kind of read that is highly addictive.

Then there is another layer - many of them in fact - as we see in flashback the relationship Laurie has with her ex, their lives together and here is where the story took on an added emotional core quite aside from the thriller aspects. With a subtle and deft touch, Claire Seeber explores the theme of destructive relationships, obsessive love and the diffiulties of removing yourself from a situation that is damaging. Sid is an entirely fascinating character, creative, haunted, intense, yet oddly sympathetic despite his actions - even given the fact that he is possibly an attempted murderer. Blurring the lines, showing that these things are not simply black and white - the emotive core of the story only makes the journey Laurie is on more absorbing and utterly riveting.

The fact that I really did not know how this was going to all pan out just made it even better - it was unpredictable, compelling and for me completely brilliant. I was almost tearful at the end, I felt like I'd been through the wringer. Some top notch construction, the author moves her characters around like pieces on a chessboard, making you question everything including Laurie herself -at the same time exploring the vagaries of human nature and all its fallibilities. Really really excellent.

With 24 hours you can have a fast paced thrill ride of a novel but you can also have a delicate character driven tale - the best of both worlds for this reader and as such the book comes highly recommended from me.
Profile Image for Christine.
831 reviews144 followers
October 1, 2015
I have decided not to do a long review for this book.

I read it quite quickly over the weekend and I was expecting an exciting pacey read. The premise of the mother having a deadline to find her child and feeling her life was under threat sounded promising. However I found it all a bit long winded and somewhat lacking. I found myself not really caring about the outcome. It was one of those books, where the reveal was a complete disappointment.

Profile Image for Renita D'Silva.
Author 10 books315 followers
September 30, 2015
Loved this wonderfully tense, intensely fast paced, fabulous, edge of your seat thriller. I was hooked from the first beautiful words. what I loved about this book are the short, action filled chapters which, without losing pace fill you in on everything that has happened in the past and bring you right bang into the action, so you are on tenterhooks along with Laurie. Loved it. Will be reading all of Claire's other books.
Profile Image for Janet .
338 reviews97 followers
November 15, 2015
24 Hours is marketed as an 'intense, suspenseful psychological thriller' and never has a stapline been so apt! I really deliberated on this one whether to choose it as a read or not. I had seen mixed viewpoints but decided to go with it. And I hope I don't cause any offence when I say this turned out to be one of those occasions where the read was much better than I was expecting.

Laurie is a separated wife and mother and goes on a much needed break with her friend, Emily. The story starts off with a fire that Laurie has escaped from but tragically Emily died in. However, there's a case of mistaken identity as the authorities think that Laurie has been killed. This buys precious time for Laurie as she's convinced that she's the target of someone determined to kill her and becomes a woman on the run. The book is told with Laurie's voice in a 24 hour timeline. Each chapter moves one hour ahead in present day and is interwoven with flasbacks as the background story is revealed.

What we see is that Laurie is on a time limit convinced that her daughter is in danger from her ex husband and is desperate to get to her before he does. In addition, we see is that the book is also a look into the human psyche and how easy it is to become consumed by someone in one of those relationships that is heady and passionate, all consuming but darkly dangerous and destructive as well. Going against the advice of those closest to her Laurie still marries her husband and heads into a life where sanity is almost lost. Her husband Kit is a fascinating character observing how an artist at the top of his game struggles to pin down the ordinary, the every day lifestyle that most are able to exist within but for someone like him who struggles with suffocating parameters and blames everyone else because he can't make it work.

The mix of the present day storytelling and flashbacks is done surprisingly well. Characters loom large and loud as the story weaves itself into so many knots you really don't know which way it's going to go. It was almost like being faced with a number of doors, open one, that's the answer. To find it's not, to then go onto the next one and so on. I can only imagine Ms Seeber much have had a wall of different coloured post-it-notes keeping track of who's who, who's going to do what because I was changing my mind with almost every chapter. I had one redeeming moment when a reveal at the very end is one I had questioned some time earlier. Phew! My detective head can remain intact ... just. Still didn't see ALL of it mind!

24 Hours is an intense rollercoaster of a read that keeps the reader very much on their toes. Yes, some of it may hit the implausible mark but I didn't mind, it still made for compelling reading that had me spinning so hard I came away with a headache and completely exhausted. One to be recommended.

Thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for the copy. Next time it might be an idea to keep headache pills handy!! ;)
Profile Image for Maxine (Booklover Catlady).
1,286 reviews1,247 followers
February 7, 2016
I actually read this book back in early January but wanted to "sit" for a bit with it to see if my review might adjust at all. Not really.

This book came with so much hype and sometimes I think that is not a good thing as you go in with super high expectations of near-perfection and there is only one way to go from there. The plot of this book really interested me and all in all it was a good one, the problem I had is that I was just well...bored for most of it *ducks and hides*.

I didn't want to be but I have to be honest huh? The fact that a few weeks later I can't recall much of the book at all to even do my review properly (that will teach me) says a lot, as memorable books I can't forget and can write a review over and over again. This was an okay read, I got to the end, it was not terrible by any means but it did not live up to the hype and it was a touch slow for me overall. 3 stars for 24 hours, I wish I could offer up more.

Many thanks to the publisher for my copy of this book to read and review via NetGalley.

For more of my book reviews, plenty of awesome books to win, and author Q&A events come to: https://www.facebook.com/BookloverCat...

To follow me on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/promotethatbook

Profile Image for Linda Strong.
3,882 reviews1,627 followers
July 31, 2017
It starts with a fire in a hotel room. Emily is dead. Laurie wasn't in the room when it went up in flames. She believes that she should have been the one killed .. not her best friend in the whole world.

Where is her daughter? Where is her mother? And who would want Laurie dead? Her soon to be ex-husband .. who was physically abusive? His new famous girlfriend? The new man in her life .. the man she really doesn't know very well? His ex-wife who comes across as anything except normal ?

This psychological thriller takes place over 24 hours with chapters back and forth between today and what happened before. The tension mounts from the very first page and continues until the explosive end. The characters are credible, the action is fast paced. Guaranteed to keep your eyes glued to the story.

Many thanks to the author / Bookouture / Netgalley who provided a digital copy of this well-written psychological thriller. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own.
Profile Image for Bill Kupersmith.
Author 1 book196 followers
January 6, 2017
My 1st finish for the year & I so wanted to like it, esp. as the author is a great Tweeter. But I fear that most readers will find Laurie's flight largely unnecessary, many of her fears groundless, & some of the incidents & characters she encounters along the way largely padding with 0 effect on the outcome. It was also difficult to believe she is supposed to be a therapist - Laurie is anything but tightly wrapped. Also villain seemed very unlikely to me, as did the villain's motivation. Twist @ end was believable. I'd not claim to have sussed it, but it crossed my mind. The audible narrator was brilliant, especially with the voice of Sid, whom I found an utter lout without a single redeeming feature. I doubt him capable of ennunciating a sentence of more than three words that doesn't feature an f-bomb. Which also ruined my sympathy for Laurie because I couldn't believe a woman of even minimal sensitivity & taste could endure marriage to such an oaf, however good he's supposed to be @ sex. He's also supposed to be a brilliant sculptor, but listening to him, I'd expect Tracey Emin's Bed a masterpiece by comparison. It is a good mum-on-the-run tale, but Helen Fitzgerald does this kind of story so much better. Throughout I kept thinking "Why doesn't Laurie just go to the police?" & when we reach the end we find that sensible choice would have spared both Laurie & the reader a lot of bother. I hope Claire Seeber doesn't despise me, but I fear I really was disappointed.
Profile Image for ReadAlongWithSue .
2,634 reviews170 followers
November 26, 2015


Love the cover.

Loved the blurb.

But when I actually started to read it, it was pretty hard going. The premises of this book is great, but the back and forward and the different things that kept popping up left a reader like me confused where I just wanted to give up......I didn't though, because I have a lot of respect for this author she writes really well and I have read one other book by her which I enjoyed, so I deemed it that I should give the benefit of the doubt and at least carry on.

All in all, with a few alterations for me, this would have been good.

It just was so choppy and confusing at times. The flow between the chapters with other "voices" saying their bit, it just didn't all tie in well.

This did disappoint me though, because the Intense, suspenseful psychological thriller....advert....got me all charged up.

* thank you to Bookouture for the chance to review this book *
Profile Image for Netta.
611 reviews37 followers
April 15, 2019
לורי היא אם חד הורית לילדונת בשם פולי. לילה אחד היא ניצלת משריפה במלון בו נספית חברתה הטובה אמילי ומשוכנעת שהפרוד האלים שלה, סיד, ניסה להתנקש בחייה ובטעות רצח את אמילי במקומה.
ככל שאנו לומדים להכיר את לורי, כך אנו מבינים עד כמה אנו לא מעוניינים להכיר אותה. מדובר בבחורה סתומה כנעל, נטולת עמוד שדרה ובעלת אופי סמרטוטי שחוזרת שוב ושוב לסיד הכלומניק שמכה ואונס אותה, במחשבה שהוא פשוט מדההההים, ומתייחסת בסלחנות לכל הנבלות שמשקרים לה ובוגדים בה, כי היא (עפעוף בעיניים) נורא אוהבת אותם, וזו בטח מעידה חד פעמית.
יאללה יאללה. מי בכלל רוצה לקרוא על שטיחון רצפה כזה? מילא היו מתלווים לכך חיבוטי נפש ורמזים לקיומה של אישיות מעניינת, אבל הקריקטורה ששמה לורי עצבנה לי את התחת ובאמת שלא עניין אותי מה יקרה לה לאורך הספר המשמים הזה.
אז לורי בורחת מסיד, ופוגשת עוד כמה דמויות חשודות שבחלק היא נותנת אמון ועם חלק היא מתקוטטת, אבל לא ברור מי טוב ומי רע. ותוך כדי הספר אנחנו מקבלים פלאשבקים לעבר, שמגלים לנו איזה נבלה סיד היה כלפיה מהרגע בו נפגשו וכמה הוא התעלל בה, ומבינים שהדמויות הנוספות היו שם לאורך כל הדרך ומנסים להבין מי טוב ומי רע.
זה לא הופך את הספר ליותר מעניין, אלא רק מתיש יותר.
הסוף היה בעיניי הכי גרוע, אבל לורי היתה מרוצה אז מי אני שאתווכח.
Profile Image for Rachel Gilbey.
2,694 reviews495 followers
September 25, 2015
Utterly unputdownable, read this brilliant book in 2 sittings, and that's only because I made the error of starting it before I went to bed. Had I not been tired, I would have read it front to back in one go.

Laurie is fearful for her daughters life, she has no idea if she can get to her in time, but knows she has to try everything in her power to get back to her daughter, before whoever she believes is after her, gets to Polly. You see Laurie was believed to be dead after a fire, but it was really her best friend Emily who died, but Laurie is convinced she was the intended target.

During 24 Hours, the chapters alternate between the present, each chapter being an hour further forward in time, counting the 24 hours out, and the past, which explains a lot of the lead up to this day, including the various people that Laurie believes could be out to get her.

This is an incredibly fast paced, adrenalin causing, story, as it is a race against time. You spend your time willing Laurie to get where she needs to be, while groaning at any point a new obstacle is put in her way. And during the past scenes, I found I could just about understand some of her decisions, while thinking, "what on earth are you doing?".

Toward the end I was feeling a bit anti-climatic, as although I hadn't quite put everything together, I think I was expecting a bit more final drama, and then there was one final revelation that I just didn't see coming at all, which took my breath away.

This was the first book I had read by Claire Seeber, and I can see why she has been snapped up by Bookoutre, clearly a very talented author. I can sometimes be left feeling a bit 'meh' after a psychological thriller, if it doesn't grip fully, but let me assure you, you won't be thinking that after this one. My heart is still pounding as I write this, and I was completely immersed in Laurie's race against time.

Thanks so much to Bookoutre and Netgalley for this review copy. This was my honest opinion.
Profile Image for Lisa Hall.
Author 8 books346 followers
October 2, 2015
SQUEEALLLL. Mucho excitement on Reading Room With A View when it was revealed that Claire Seeber is Bookouture's newest recruit - I read Claire's first book yeeeeeears ago and LOVED it, so I was super excited to be able to read 24 Hours ahead of publication date.
It seems that Bookouture are snapping up the cream of the crop at the moment and building the most amazing portfolio of authors - and Claire is no exception to the rule. 24 Hours is an excellent, fast paced read that found me utterly hooked after the opening page. I love the way the novel is written - hour by hour - each hour building the tension before crashing towards the finale. Laurie is an incredibly unreliable narrator (which I love) and as she doesn't know who to trust, neither does the reader.
I did guess who was behind it all, but that didn't ruin anything for me - this is an excellent psychological thriller with heaps of tension, a perfect page turner.
Profile Image for Lynn Mccarthy.
484 reviews24 followers
January 3, 2016
24 Hours is a fast paced book
Laurie has escaped from a fire that killed her best friend Emily but everybody thinks it was Laurie that died in the fire, was it supposed to be her that died is somebody trying to kill her?
Polly Laurie's daughter is on her way home with her grandmother from a holiday and Laurie needs to get to them first before somebody else does.
I liked the way the book alternates between past and present
A lot of suspects in the story but I never picked the right one a brilliant ending.A good psychological thriller which will keep you reading until the small hours.
Thank you Netgalley the publisher and Author for a chance to read this book i will be reading more from this author.
Profile Image for Carrie.
3,038 reviews1,499 followers
November 1, 2015
24 Hours is a gripping phychological thriller that centers around the main character Laurie. The chapters alternate between what is happening in the present time and a look back at Laurie's past.

In the present story line Laurie has just escaped a fire at her hotel which has taken the life of her best friend Emily. Emily was mistakenly identified as Laurie and Laurie believes that the fire was meant to kill her. She panics and runs from the police and investigation to try to get to her mother who has taken her daughter on a trip but due to return before her ex-husband can get to them.

The chapters from the past tell the tale of how Laurie was treated by her husband and what happens after their split. Also, it tells how Laurie had met another man after Sid had left.

The majority of this book was definitely a gripping page turning suspense but I did feel a bit in the middle slowed down just a tad bit. Laurie on her journey to find Polly fell asleep several times which I kind of questioned as no matter how long it's been since you've slept I'd think your daughter being missing and possibly someone out to kill you would have me wide awake. Didn't quite understand that being added in especially more than once.

Otherwise I was definitely caught up in the story and wondering just what the story of the fire and why it happened. Was it truly Sid? Was it Mal? Or is anyone even out to get Laurie or it all in her mind? So many questions to be answered and such an intriguing past that I'm sure readers should love following Laurie on her adventure.

24 hours in Laurie's life was certainly an adventure that should hook readers. Would definitely recommend checking out this novel.


I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.wordpress....




Profile Image for Karen.
855 reviews473 followers
December 24, 2015
This is a fast paced thriller, with suspenseful moments, all set as the title suggests, over a period of 24 hours.

Laurie is convinced that her estranged husband is trying to kill her and faces a race against time to find their young daughter before he does and never being sure who she can trust. The chapters are short which I like – I’m a sucker for ‘just one more page….’!.

I enjoyed this but not as much as I expected to. I think I would have preferred the story to be written in the third person POV rather than first. We only see events through Laurie’s eyes and there are times when she makes some questionable decisions. I would have liked to have the reaction and thoughts from other people around her to give a more rounded view.

I did find the constant jumping from past to present a bit confusing at times and wasn’t always sure where in the story we were. I also found the ending a bit meh and a bit of a let down. After all the effort and suspense being built up in the story, I was expecting something a bit more.

I would read more by this author, I just found this one a bit of a disappointment.
Profile Image for Caroline Mitchell.
Author 30 books1,754 followers
September 26, 2016
Wow! I'm still catching my breath after reading this psychological thriller. Full of twists and turns it contains all the ingredients for a fast paced read. I read it in just a few days as each time I tried to put the book down, I was tempted into reading just a few more pages. The switch between past and present is effortlessly conducted, as our protagonist unravels what is taking place. A thoroughly gripping read.
Profile Image for Tracy Fenton.
889 reviews166 followers
February 7, 2016
This is a "just one more chapter" book which turns into several hours of continuous reading before you realise you need to get up, feed the kids, speak to the other half! An action packed fast paced psychological thriller with lots of characters with dark secrets.
Profile Image for Barbara.
54 reviews2 followers
November 2, 2015
I downloaded this book on the basis of all the good reviews on Amazon. But I think they must have been reading a different book. The writing was juvenile and bland - it read a bit like a silly romantic novel at times. The characterisation was poor and I did not feel any sympathy or liking for the characters. Laurie was a mess! The plot was dull and plodding and I had guessed the perpetrator about halfway through. I stuck with it to the end, as I don't like to not finish books, but now I wish I hadn't wasted my time. Don't believe the other reviews!
Profile Image for Sophie.
566 reviews33 followers
October 14, 2015

Posted in full http://www.reviewedthebook.co.uk/2015...

I was desperate to get my hands on 24 Hours after seeing the cover reveal and reading the synopsis. I seriously love the synopsis – it had my heart racing even before starting the book! The story inside the pages did not let me down and kept me guessing right until the very end – lapping up every detail and red herring to try and work out what was going on. 24 Hours was so difficult to put down as Claire drags you right into the story until you’ve no escape – you’ve got to keep on reading.

The story is narrated by Laurie – a mother, frightened about her daughter Poppy’s safety. Laurie’s best friend, Emily, has just been killed and she’s convinced that whoever killed her killed the wrong person. They wanted Laurie instead. The desperation and anxiety Laurie felt is so obvious and delivered exceptionally. I felt it for her, felt the stress and the panic she was feeling. It had me reading at a relentless pace trying to see where the story was going to take us. Being set over, of course, 24 hours, meant this book needed to keep up a fast pace to keep the reader interested, but still take time to develop each aspect so we could buy into the story. Claire had me hooked with her gripping style of writing and the way she told the narrative.

The chapters are set out as Then and Now. The chapters set in the present time run quickly and really build up Laurie’s fear and desperation. I didn’t know it was possible to fit so much chaos into one day but she manages it! Though I preferred the chapters set in the 24 hours, because I was eager – to say the least – to discover who was responsible for Emily’s death and how Laurie was involved, to discover Poppy’s whereabouts, the chapters told in the past were what immersed me into the story as we learnt about the various characters Laurie was linked to, all the possible people that could have been out to get her. As they lead up to the day itself, I was completely none the wiser as to who killed Emily. Either because it was clever or because I’m slow but I loved how I couldn’t guess it! I was still surprised right at the end and that’s the sign of a successful psychological thriller for me.

I found the pacing of this book to be brilliant. At the beginning, the sentences are short and snappy and I couldn’t get enough of them. They were made to be read quickly and I devoured them, ready for more. As things develop later on, and the plot gets more complex, the story became even more ridiculously addictive than I had been expecting. The style of chapters meant that by the time I got to the end of one, and knew I had other things to do, I had already convinced myself that one more chapter wouldn’t hurt. I found myself doing that until the 24 hours were nearly up, and I mean only an idiot would give up then. I could not stop reading.

The characters in this book are not ones I was naturally drawn to, which was of course to be expected. But Laurie was a character I was trying to push on, willing and rooting for her to get to safety, to find out who’d caused Emily’s death and where her daughter was. I didn’t fully trust her but I sympathised with her because through her panic and exasperation, nobody took her seriously. There’s a whole mixture of other characters that crop up in the story and there wasn’t one I didn’t suspect at some point. It was deeply unsettling how everybody seemed to have a motive that would cause damage to Laurie.

Though I liked this book all the way through, I felt like at times towards the middle, it fell a little bit flat. I couldn’t quite put my finger on what went missing but it felt close to losing its way at times. But that was only a minor negative point for a rare psychological thriller that didn’t disappoint. The story, with its 24 hour timeframe, was different to a lot of other books out there at the moment in the same genre. It made this book stand out a lot and I loved the plot and feeling like I was reading something new. Although with Claire’s fantastic publisher in Bookouture, I didn’t really expect anything less. 24 Hours was brilliantly tense, with the tension constantly leaving me on edge as it kept going right until the very end, more revelations still to come. And finally – a psychological thriller with a satisfying ending! I was beginning to think they no longer existed.

(review copy)
Profile Image for Cleopatra  Pullen.
1,340 reviews298 followers
October 17, 2015
I love beautiful language and a thoughtful complex plot as much as anyone but I had been thinking recently that it has been a long time since I have been quite so engrossed in a book, turning the pages (well clicking the clicker) to find out what on earth is going to happen next, and reading in the moment. While that thought breezed through my brain little did I know that I had just such a book, sitting on my kindle ready to read and review; that book was 24 Hours.

24 Hours is as you might expect. set over just that time period, and we follow Laurie in the present time, and tense, who is racing against time to get to her daughter Polly. To complicate matters Laurie’s best friend Emily has just been killed in a fire, a fire which Laurie believes was meant to result in her own demise.

Each alternate chapter is set in the past, although the ‘then’ chapters aren’t in chronological order they give us an insight into what led to Laurie’s predicament. In a nutshell Laurie thinks that her ex-husband Sid, a feted artist, now ensconced with his model girlfriend wants her out of the way following her insistence that he shouldn’t see their daughter Polly for a while. Polly is returning from Disneyland Paris with Laurie’s mother while Laurie has been spending the days in Devon relaxing with her oldest and dearest friend Emily. Terrified by the events during the night and convinced that Sid wants her dead Laurie feels compelled to reach Polly as she arrives back from France before Sid does, even if that means hiding from the police who are investigating the fire at the hotel.

This book was structured really well, despite the change in time periods between the chapters it was easy to keep track, the headings clearly signpost both the time period and the number of hours into the chase counting upwards from hour dot to 24 hours. The change in tense between the chapters really helped keep track of the time period, I do enjoy book that look back as well as forward but it is incredibly easy to get confused if this isn’t handled carefully.

This is one of those books to be enjoyed, to go with the flow and get wrapped up in the tension because to be honest Laurie makes some pretty stupid decisions. This is an action led rather than a character led book, and because of that close examination may leave them a little lacking in substance, but I truly believe that in this type of book, as long as there are enough hooks for the reader to paint the picture, this isn’t really terribly important.

This psychological thriller, actually lives up to the thriller part of the moniker, something that many books in this genre lack, giving this reader enough heart-racing moments that were a measure of how involved I felt in this desperate race against time novel.

I’d like to say a huge thank you to Bookouture for allowing me to read a copy of this book in return for my honest opinion.
Profile Image for Wendy.
546 reviews37 followers
October 8, 2015
It’s ironic to start a book called 24 hours and finish it within that exact time frame. It wasn’t intentional, yet that’s precisely what happened. With such an intriguing opening and emotional trauma throughout, I found it impossible not to tear through the pages of this twisty thriller!

After experiencing the aftermath of a separation from her unstable husband and famous artist, Sid, Laurie Smith was taking a much needed break with her best mate in Cornwall when all hell breaks loose.

We first meet a shocked Laurie standing in scene of carnage being herded like cattle to seek medical attention. She can’t find her best friend. No one has seen her. But worst of all people think that it’s Laurie who is dead, perished in a fire at their hotel.

Hearing her own demise on the news and considering the sourness of her previous turbulent relationship, she is determined to reach her daughter in London before her husband discovers that Laurie still has a pulse.

Her grief for her friend can wait, as can her own safety. Over the next 24 hours we see her making an emotional scramble to get home and protect her child, appealing to strangers for help, while trying to make sense as to why inexplicable events are happening along the way heightening her fear.

It’s easy to follow events as they unfold, as each chapter is entitled with the number of hour about to pass where we’ll see her stumbling from one crisis to another. Sandwiched between them is a revisit to her past, which offers an insight into how her world was demolished by hostility. As the layers begin to peel we get to the core of why she’s so anxious when we re-join her in the present tense (or the tense present) and the hours tick on.

This story will have you hanging on to the coat tails of a desperate mother, while confusion, mistrust and raw emotion brew to create a tense and suspenseful journey of survival where things are not as they first appear. It’s one of those plots where you feel a genuine contempt for the behaviour of a few of the characters, while a stranger’s intervention may take you quite by surprise.

And you’d be forgiven for thinking: exactly how hard can it be to make your way across the country to hold a loved one without bumping into trouble along the way? Sounds easy, doesn’t it? Not on this watch. Compelling reading, guaranteed.

(My thanks to the publisher for providing a digital copy of this book for review, via Netgalley.)
Profile Image for Joanne Robertson.
1,349 reviews549 followers
October 9, 2015
I was very interested to hear that Claire Seeber had joined the publisher Bookouture, as they are publishing some amazing books and authors at the moment. I have read Claire's other books and really enjoyed them so was very pleased to get my hands on an ARC of 24 hours.
Laurie has escaped from a fire that has killed her best friend Emily. She thinks the fire was started deliberately to kill her instead but she has no idea why or who is out to get rid of her. What follows is a race against time, avoiding the police, to find her mother and daughter and work out who she can trust.
I really enjoyed the way that the story was told in Then and Now alternating throughout the book. The Now was also told during a 24 hour period as Laurie races to find Polly and work out who tried to kill her. It is full of twists and turns as Laurie doesn't know who to trust. The suspects all seem very guilty and everyone is lying to her. I did work out where the plot was going but it didn't spoil my enjoyment of this well written thriller. I found Emily a rather naive narrator but I liked the characters she met on her journey of discovery especially the adorable Polly. The ending for me didn't quite work but I understand why the author went in that direction. That was the only negative and why I gave it 4*.
I find Claire's novels to be well written and researched with an adrenaline fuelled plot line and look forward to reading more from her in the near future.
Profile Image for Pia.
236 reviews18 followers
June 17, 2016
Laurie's life is falling apart: her marriage is over, her husband has a new and exotic girlfriend and worse of all, her best friend has just died in a fire and Laurie fears it was she who was the intended victim.

Not knowing who is trying to kill her, she has only 24 hours to find her daughter and move to a safe place for both of them. She has no money, no car, no id.

Who can she trust? Also, while in the beginning everybody thinks she died in the fire, it is soon found out it was not her, which makes her a subject of interest for the police.
So Laurie, in a state of shock and exhaustion, begs, borrows and steals in order to find her little girl before it is too late.

This is a great thriller, fast, full of events, but perfectly timed and executed. You feel the mc sadness, and you end as tired as she is.

And the end? You won't guess what is happening there, I promise!

I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review
Profile Image for Kate.
606 reviews517 followers
November 4, 2015

Many thanks to Bookouture and Netgalley for my copy of this book.

I'm (trying!!!) to participate in Bookouture Thriller week and 24 Hours is my second read out of the 8 books on the list!


About the book:

Here today. Dead tomorrow?

My best friend, Emily, is dead – killed last night in a hotel fire.
But it was meant to be me.

Now I have 24 hours to find my daughter.

Before he finds out I’m still alive.


My thoughts:

I've literally just finished reading 24 Hours so I needed to write the review ASAP! I'm annoyed it took me three days to read but that's beside the point!

24 Hours is a fantastic thriller. It's set in alternating chapters, Then and Now, which really adds to the suspense. Laurie is on the run in the aftermath of the hotel fire. She has her suspicions as to who is at fault. On top of that, her daughter is not where she should be.

I found myself rooting for Laurie. Willing her on, hoping that she would find her daughter. Wishing that her husband/soon to be ex-husband would just go away as he was completely self centred and arrogant in all matters except towards his daughter.

There are some wonderful characters in 24 Hours. Enter Mal, pretty sure it's short for Malicious (not really, obviously!) and his spurned wife. My god, these two were just mad. Clearly they had their own stuff going on, parallel to Laurie and Sid's escalating situation!

I don't want to give anything away in terms of plot. There were so many twists and turns and red herrings that I wasn't expecting the truth when it came. I was surprised and shocked!!

I gave 24 Hours 4⭐️ on Goodreads!

Happy reading
Profile Image for Dee-Cee  It's all about the books.
300 reviews18 followers
January 31, 2016
24 Hours is a fast paced psychological thriller that is hard to put down. It has twists and turns and the more I read the harder it was to figure out who killed Laurie's friend Emily and who is after Laurie as everyone could have done it. I thrive on trying to guess "the who done it" in all books but this kept me guessing and totally engrossed all the way through and even wondering at one point if there really was someone after her.

The story opens with Laurie in hospital with smoke inhalation after the fire and the book is very cleverly spread out telling the story before and the 24 hours after the fire. Some books I've read where time jumps it has been a bit confusing but Claire seems to do this seamlessly and the 24 hour time frame parts are so intense I was reading it like I was being chased and had to get it finished.

24 Hours is a heart racing, adrenaline pumping, can't put down read. I'm really looking forward to reading more from Claire soon.

Thanks to Bookouture and Netgalley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Shell Baker.
630 reviews13 followers
January 2, 2016
I am giving this book 5 stars after reading it in one sitting the title is what it says it is, I am a Claire Seeber fan and this is definitely her best one yet.

The story is set over 24 hours with Laurie racing against time to find her daughter. The chapters flick between the count up to the 24 hours and the past building up the story of what has happened and what is happening which is very cleverly done when the story comes to an whole at the end. this is what makes this story exciting and full of suspense. I was literary sitting on the edge of my seat hoping Laurie gets to her daughter.

If you like fast paced psychological thrillers then this book is for you.

thanks to netgallery and the publisher for this book
Profile Image for Donna Maguire.
4,308 reviews102 followers
February 15, 2016
Wow - 24 Hours is a fast-paced, intelligent psychological thriller that will leave you breathless,. This book was wonderfully intense and tense, fast paced and ultimately a fabulous, edge of your seat thriller, wonderful for a cold autumnal or winter day when you can wrap up warm in a blanket and envelop yourself in the story. The chapters are punchy and action packed. Seeber runs two stories at the same time, the past and the present and will keep you on tenterhooks right up to the end. I can normally guess the ending on books but this one left me guessing up to the end....
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