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The Night Visitor

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  2,172 ratings  ·  354 reviews

'Horribly, horribly compulsive. Brilliant' Fiona Barton

How far would you go to save your reputation? The stunning new noir thriller from the author of the bestselling The Missing One and The Other Child. Perfect for fans of Into the Water and Lie With Me.

Professor Olivia Sweetman has worked hard to achieve the life she loves, with a high-flying career as a TV presen

Kindle Edition, 368 pages
Published May 4th 2017 by Quercus
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Average rating 3.78  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,172 ratings  ·  354 reviews

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Jun 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was stunning. Just stunning.

Olivia Sweetman is a successful and attractive History professor who has started making a name for herself on television. She is struggling to maintain her professional life whilst managing her home life with her husband and three children.
Vivian is the socially awkward and solitary housekeeper at Ileford Manor, where she is caretaker of the house and it's possessions whilst her employer is in a care home.

One day a flyer falls through Olivia's letterbox which p
Jun 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book totally lived up to the creepy title and cover! I saw this on NetGalley and requested without even reading what it was about, that's how drawn I was to this one, and I'm thrilled to say that it doesn't disappoint!

Olivia Sweetman is a beautiful wife and mother with a successful career as a historian. Her career is about to skyrocket with the debut of her first book, Anabel, which is guaranteed to make the best seller list. However, this book only came to be with the help of Vivian Test
Holly  B

I was immediately swept up into the world of Olivia Sweetman, a wife and mother of three, a successful career woman and author of a new bestseller titled Anabel. The book is based on a Victorian diary of Annabel Burley whose personal life is sensational and who paved the way for women in the medical field.

Enter the not so elegant Vivian, who is socially awkward, lonely, plain and bitterly jealous. She is the private secretary, manager, housekeeper, caretaker, and trustee of Manor Ileford. She al
"Embrace reality even if it burns you." (Pierre Berge)

How many steps does it actually take to keep a great distance between deceit and frenetic lies? Truth be told, never ever enough foot action.

Olivia Sweetman seems to be having it all. She is wife to David, author and psychologist, mother to three active children, and a very successful history professor known far and wide on the TV circuit. She has a home in London, a family farm, and vacations in the south of France. Not much lacking here. Li
May 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thanks to Quercus for gifting me a copy of The Night Visitor by Lucy Atkins

Olivia Sweetman has the perfect life. She has three kids, a wonderful husband and two homes. She is a well know historian and will soon be publishing a book titled Anabel. The book is based on a Victorian diary of Anabel Burley who confesses to murdering her husband.

Vivian is the one who found the diary and secretly brought it to Olivia’s attention. Oh god, Vivian is straightup MESSY BOOTS. She’s socially awkward and jus
Liz Barnsley
Apr 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Oh The Night Visitor has some beautiful beautiful writing, it took me all of 5 seconds to be totally immersed into this one, it has two of the most impressive characters I’ve read in a long long time, with a story that is often haunting and genuinely sends you deeper down the rabbit hole with every chapter.

Told alternatively between Olivia, highly successful, hiding a secret and Vivian, her “research assistant” who knows many things and is hiding her own, the relationship between these two, how
Lucy Banks
Apr 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 12, 2018 rated it liked it
The Night Visitor is definitely a clever and unique thriller.

Olivia Sweetman has the perfect life! She has three children, a supportive husband, and two homes (don't we all wish we had two homes! lol). Olivia has just published a book title Anabel which is based on a Victorian diary of Anabel Burley who murdered her husband.

Then we have Vivian who "secretly" brought the diary to Olivia's attention. Oh my goodness is Vivian a hot mess haha. She is quite the opposite of Olivia... she's socially
I read Lucy Atkins’ debut novel The Missing One in 2014 and adored it. It was one of my favourite books of that year – combining a tale of family and long lost secrets with (of all things!) a passion for killer whales. Her next book, The Other Child felt like quite a departure. I enjoyed it but was a little surprised that it seemed so different to its predecessor. And here we are again, with Atkins offering up something completely different, which I guess says something about her versatility as ...more
Brilliant brilliant brilliant

see locations here : Visit The Night Visitor

Two gripping lead characters, intrigue like you wouldn't believe and a plot that's like standing on a rug, having your feet pulled out from it, smacking your head as you hit the floor and then sitting dazed on the floor as you realise what the consequences of that ending actually are.

Oh and the'll be scratching half way through but the beetles are there as a very interesting part of the plot.

Very v
After reading several psychological thrillers with minimalist writing styles, it took me a while to get into this. However the further I read, the more I couldn't put it down.

The character and relationship development (amazing) along with scenery descriptions fit seamlessly into the story. I didn't realize how much I liked the writing and format until I was halfway through the book. It alternates between Olivia and Vivian and past and present. New information is revealed every chapter.

The two ma
Erin (from Long Island, NY)
(3.5) I devoured the first half of this book.. I've seen other reviews where reader's felt it was too wordy but i enjoyed the extremely creepy, atmospheric style. Both women were interesting to me, & i thought the format of alternating pov's was well done. The problem for me came at about 60% when it really slowed down. It became obvious where we were headed, but the path to get there just felt drawn out and repetitive. I went from hanging on every word, to seriously contemplating a dnf at about ...more
C.L. Taylor
In The Night Visitor Lucy Atkins has created, in Vivian Tester, one of the most vivid, memorable and menacing characters I've ever read. She's brilliant - deluded, obsessed and scarily believable - and is the perfect adversary for the ambitious main character, historian Olivia. The two-handed approach - one chapter from Olivia and one chapter from Vivian (her researcher) - works really well and, with every turned page, my unease and curiosity intensified as Lucy Atkins cleverly and deftly ramped ...more
May 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
The two main characters of this novel are Olivia Sweetman and Vivian Tester. A third character is the lowly dung beetle. Yes, you read that correctly.

Professor Olivia Sweetman is a historian, teacher, writer, popular and plausible to all who know her. She's well dressed, attractive, mother to three children and wife to David, a writer whose star is fading as he struggles to write a follow up to his first successful book. Vivian Tester is a nobody. 60 years old, spinster, bulky, frumpy and altoge
The Book Whisperer (aka Boof)
I bloody loved this book. It put me somewhat in mind of Zoe Heller's Notes on a Scandal (which I also bloody loved). Alternating between the voices of Olivia - successful author and TV-personality, attractive, nice houses, large family, and Vivian - bitter, jealous, lonely, plain, elderly housekeeper, The Night Visitor sucks the reader into a claustrophobic chokehold of deceit and secrets.

While Olivia Sweetman should be riding high on the massive success of her latest book, she is acting strange
MaryannC. Book Freak
Wonderfully creepy. Author Lucy Atkins sets a great tone for the creepy goodness of this novel with her informative tidbits about Dung Beetles which are interspersed throughout the story about Olivia Sweetman, a tv personality, historian and author of a soon to be published book. Olivia, caught up in her fame while promoting her book meets Vivian Tester, a dowdy housekeeper to a famous gothic manor who possesses the diary that her book is based on who has secrets of her own and ultimately leads ...more
Mandy White (mandylovestoread)
May 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: net-galley
The Night Visitor by Lucy Atkins was such a good book. It is the first by the author that I have read and I will definitely be looking out for her again.

Professor Olivia Sweetman has the perfect life - she has 3 kids and wonderful husband. She is a TV presenter and a well respected historian. Now she is launching her best selling book based on the Victorian diary of Annabel Burley. Her secrets and deceits are threatening to be exposed - just how far will she go to protect her reputation?

Thanks t
Roman Clodia
Apr 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Remember Zoe Heller's Notes on a Scandal? Well, this is like a lighter, less morally-dense version of that book with added gothic deliciousness.

Atkins has created a gripping page-turner of a book as academic historian turned TV eye candy (I loved that she's been invited to take part in Strictly!) Olivia finds her life collapsing on all fronts: her marriage is under pressure, her teenage son is troubled, and now her scholarly reputation might end up in tatters. On the other side, we have the sli
Nat K
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book absolutely captivated me! If I could rate it higher I would.

Although the story itself is centred primarily around the two main characters of Olivia Sweetman & Vivian Tester, there was never a dull moment, and I couldn't help but turn the page to see where the story would lead.

The two women are on opposite ends of the spectrum, both privately and professionally. Olivia Sweetman is riding the crest of the wave, a historian with TV deals and a book about to break the best seller lists, w
May 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
A dark creepy pyschological thriller, The Night Visitor had me immersed from the first page.
The characters of Olivia and Vivian were intruiging and so compelling to read about. Vivian is chilling and the author gives a sinister insight into a damaged mind.

Lucy Atkins is able to capture the emotions of these two women with very clever writing.
I read this in a matter of days, as I just had to find out more about these two women and how their stories would turn out.
I would recommend this book to a
Karen Mace
Apr 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If you are looking for a story to creep you out and have you wary of trusting anyone, then look no further!! This is the story of Olivia who has a seemingly perfect family, and is a bestselling writer/tv personality/historian - but sometimes things aren't quite as they seem!!

The story centres around the points of view of Olivia and the 60 year old housekeeper, Vivian, who has helped her with research for her latest book. And as the release date approaches then Olivia starts to realise that the
Such a wonderful, engrossing read!

Megan Jones
Jul 21, 2017 rated it liked it
Professor Olivia Sweetman has worked hard to get where she has, with a high flying career as a TV presenter and historian and her family life with her husband and children. But as she stands before her crowd at her new book launch, she can barely look anyone in the eye. Only one person knows what she has done and if that person confesses what they knew, her whole life will be over. That person is Vivian Tester, a socially awkward housekeeper of a Sussex manor where the diary Olivia's novel is ba ...more
Sabrina Santangelo Cooley
This book just didn't work for me. There was way too much extra information that wasn't completed and left big holes. I wasn't as enthralled as other mysteries/thrillers and the big TWIST (?) was easily seen coming. I actually disliked both characters. Even writing this I'm thinking about all of the unanswered questions. The beginning started with big mysteries that didn't even need to be mysterious - she makes mention of Bertie but not who he is or where he is now - it makes you think "Oh i nee ...more
Kathryn Hardy
Aug 15, 2017 rated it it was ok
Too many loose ends not tied up and a ridiculously abrupt ending, spoil what could have been an excellent thriller. Would be interested to find out the reasoning behind the title, as 'the night visitor' was not a major factor in the book; although I was waiting for there to be some link made between Vivian's night visitor and the incident in France- which sadly there wasn't! Disappointing after a really promising middle section. ...more
Renita D'Silva
Jan 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Amazing. Intelligent. Brilliant.

My second book by the author and - ta-da ! - my next 5 stars for the brilliant Lucy Atkins.
Linda Hill
Apr 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
TV historian Professor Olivia Sweetman has a new book out and is riding high, but all is not as it seems.

Oh my goodness! The Night Visitor is just my kind of read. I love a psychological thriller and The Night Visitor has every element that I adore, from almost Gothic symbolism to characters that put me in mind of some of the most damaged women in literature such as Dickens’ Miss Havisham and Du Maurier’s Mrs Danvers.

I so want to mention specific images or phrases but I know that this will spoil
Ever since reading Lucy Atkins’ latest book MAGPIE LANE I have been a huge fan of the way her mind works and have been reading my way through her previous books. I was touched by Kali’s quest to find out about her late mother in THE MISSING ONE and enchanted by the wild landscape of Vancouver island, with its rugged coastline and its many natural wonders. I was fascinated by the cover of THE NIGHT VISITOR, which features a dung beetle of all things, and immediately taken in by the premise of the ...more
Heather Fineisen
May 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An excellent novel that layers suspense throughout. Science vs history and what role does imagination play in the two. How does imagination impact credibility of the scientist and historian. Olivia is an historian with some role on tv. She is writing a book about a female doctor at a time when women were barely allowed in the profession. Vivian becomes her research assistant and creepiness sets in. A book about a book and dung beetles and it all works. Thought provoking and mysterious, a top rea ...more
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Lucy Atkins is an award-winning author, Sunday Times book critic and journalist. Her new novel, MAGPIE LANE, is a literary thriller set in an Oxford College. Her other novels are The Night Visitor, The Other Child and The Missing One.

Lucy reviews books for The Sunday Times and has written for newspapers such as The Guardian, The Times, The Telegraph, the T.L.S, and many magazines. She has also wri

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