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The Closer I Get

3.71  ·  Rating details ·  376 ratings  ·  87 reviews

A compulsive, disturbingly relevant, twisty and powerful psychological, social-media thriller from the bestselling author of The Black Path

Tom is a successful author, but he’s struggling to finish his novel. His main distraction is an online admirer, Evie, who simply won’t leave him alone.
Evie is smart, well read and unstable; she lives with her father and her social-media

Kindle Edition
Published May 11th 2019 by ORENDA BOOKS
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Average rating 3.71  · 
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Sep 05, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
I'll see myself out.

DNF at 35%.
Apr 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing

Unusual for me to have trouble starting a review...there is so much to say on this book I dont know where to start!
This is a book about internet obsession, stalking, love from afar via social media that goes so so wrong and in so many ways
Tom is the ‘hunted’ successful author, Evie the ‘hunter’ and what seems a harmless admiration soon turns into a chaotic unbelievable nightmare...but this is 2019, it is believable and it happens, the story is about as relevant and ‘on point’ as you can get
Wow, one of the times when I wished I had DNFed instead of pushing through...
Slow and repetitive, I kept waiting for the thrilling action to happen. It started off okay, and I liked the threat of both narrator's being so unreliable, but it really dragged on! There was so much pointless description, the main characters were all unlikeable, and there just wasn't enough to keep me entertained. I didn't like the ending either.

The social media stalking was realistic though, and I do worry about that
The Tattooed Book Geek (Drew).
As always this review can also be found on my blog The Tattooed Book Geek: https://thetattooedbookgeek.wordpress...

The Closer I Get is compulsive, dark and highly relevant to today’s society, the online world where likes, comments, shares, retweets, views and follower counts hold sway. The society where many measure their own self-worth not by who they are as a person but by the numbers of their online presence.

At times, we all wear masks whether we want to admit it or not, for some, it might be
The Book Review Café
When I was young, many moons ago, trolls were cute plastic dolls with sticking up hair, and social media was unheard of it, fast forward a decade or three! and social media is something we’ve convinced ourselves we can’t do without. In someways I embrace social media but I have had always had reservations about the negative side of social media, the trolls, the vicious comments, it goes on and on. After reading The Closer I get by Paul Burston I find I’m even more paranoid about my own use of Tw ...more
Louise Beech
Apr 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is unlike anything else I've read recently. Clever, tense, bang-on-the-moment, thrilling, and God, it makes you think about how social media invades our lives. Who are we online? Who are our followers? And most of all, who are those we know in the real world? A totally gripping thriller that I'll be thinking about for a long time. Highly recommend.
Mar 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Tom Hunter's first novel was a huge success. A bestseller, adapted for Hollywood and praised widely by literary critics. He's struggling to write a second book and stares at the blank page, day in and day out.

Evie Stokes is Tom's biggest fan. She's obsessed with him, and her obsession is causing problems for them both.

The story opens with a letter from Evie to Tom, headed up 'Day One'. After reading the letter, the reader is aware of how far her obsession has gone; she talks about seeing Tom tod
S.E. Lynes
Apr 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I have been curious to read something by Paul Burston simply because he is such an active supporter of other writers both in his online activity and through the incredible LGBTQ literary salon, Polari, which I have had the privilege of attending a few times now. So it was with trepidation that I picked up a review copy of this book (I have also pre-ordered on kindle) because I so wanted it to be good. And, my goodness, was it ever. It was more than good, it was a treat. The themes of mutual obse ...more
Laura Rash
Apr 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After having finished this book I feel the need to immediately delete my Twitter app! Very timely on so many different subjects. Dark and mysterious until the very end which doesn’t go as I quite thought. Paul Burston has created a true original!
Jun 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well, now. If this doesn’t make you want to shut down all of your social media accounts and unplug your modern technology gadgets from now until eternity, I don’t know what will.

Tom Hunter is a successful author but he’s struggling to finish his latest novel. An online fan, Evie, just will not leave him alone. When Evie is hit with a restraining order, Tom is able to live again and enjoy his freedom. Or is he? Because there is a lot more to this story than you might think.

I must admit, I’ve been
Kelly Van Damme
May 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I would love to tell you that The Closer I Get is thought-provoking but that would be the understatement of the century. Good heavens, I cannot count the times I looked up from its pages to ponder its content, not on one hand, not on both hands, I’d probably need both feet as well. I mean, it’s a crazy thing, social media, isn’t it. I for one adore Twitter, I really do. I have found my people there. In the so-called real life, hardly anyone relates to my love for books, while on Twitter I have f ...more
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
From the very first page, I was well and truly hooked on this story. It alternates between Evie and Tom so we get inside the head of the stalker as well as the victim. What a place to be inside!

To start with everything seems quite straight forward, Evie is obviously mentally unstable and her obsession with Tom is just that. Tom you can’t help but feel sorry for everything that he is going through. As the story goes further along though I started to get a few niggles about whether everything was
Jul 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Talk about a book that gets right under your skin! Social media has become firmly ingrained in all of lives and this book takes a hard look at the dark side and is a truly thought provoking read, full of paranoia, dread and just an overall feeling of uneasiness.

You hear from both Evie and Tom as this flips back and forth between them both in alternating chapters and I questioned how reliable they both were the entire way through, it kept me on my toes for sure. At times they both come across as
May 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: novels-set-in-uk
Thriller set in SOUTH LONDON and HASTINGS

Author Tom Hunter has a stalker, identified as Evie Stokes. As the novel opens, the trial is in full swing as we meet the two adversaries.

Tom’s first novel was extremely successful, enabling him to buy a riverside apartment in Vauxhall, but he is struggling to complete the next book. His money has dribbled away, and he is in a ‘relationship’ now with Emma, a friendship with no sexual connection because he is gay. He is objective enough to realise that he
Jul 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tom Hunter is the author of a bestselling novel but his second book hasn’t matched the huge success of the first and his confidence has taken a knock, he is struggling to write his latest book and is getting pressure from his agent. At a book signing he meets Evie, she shows an interest in his book, they chat, he signs her book. She gives him her business card. She follows him on Twitter, he follows back. The chat starts off friendly enough and he likes the attention but then when the tone chang ...more
Jan 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had this paperback bought for me as a Christmas present
May 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is my first book by this author and I'm going to have to go and read his other books now. Well written and oh so tense, I thought the characters were so well portrayed I was lost in the story, increasingly horrified as events unfolded. It really is a compelling page-turner! And it could happen, that's the really scary thing about this story.
Yvonne (It's All About Books)

Finished reading: July 11th 2019

"The whole online world is one big stalking exercise. If I'm guilty, then so are millions of others."

*** A copy of this book was kindly provided to me by Anne Cater and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! ***
(view spoiler)
Madeleine Black
May 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book I've read by Paul Burston and loved it!! I was gripped from the very start right to the last page. It's a dark but compelling story of stalking and social media, which made me question who are my followers and how do I portray myself. It's also a story of how we should nurture our friendships and not let ego or pride get in the way.
Zoé-lee O'farrell

I am not sure if I have any new words to review this book that has not already been said but I can only but try. Have I already mentioned how excited I was about reading this book? It truly did not disappoint me, Paul got me hooked from the opening pages. I really did not want to put the book but I did not want to rush it, well mainly being ill hasn’t helped, but I wanted to savour every word on every page. I was enthralled with this story of Evie and Tom, Tom and Evie. This dark tale of obsessi
When I heard that Paul Burston was joining #TeamOrenda I was very excited. I had an inkling that this was going to be a brilliant pairing and boy was I right. From the moment I started to read The Closer I Get I knew I was in for a bumpy ride. This is, on the surface, the story of author, Tom, and stalker, Evie. Evie goes to a book signing. Tom is polite. Signs the book. Makes an off the cuff remark about their being soul mates ... Unleashes all manner of hell from there on in. From the very fir ...more
Tracy Fenton
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
“Brrrrrr” – that was me after finishing this book as I was covered in goosebumps because THE CLOSER I GET is one hell of a chilling, thought-provoking, scary story.

This is Paul Burston’s latest novel published by Orenda and is exceptionally well written, pacy, scary and highly topical.

Tom Hunter is a successful author, his first book became a best seller and was made into a film starring Ryan Gosling. His second book didn’t quite get the same response from the public (in fact it was panned by th
Jun 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wow! What a crazy ride!!!! Couldn't put this one down.
Mairead Hearne (
The Closer I Get is the latest novel from Paul Burston and was published on 11th July with Orenda Books. Described as ‘a compulsive, disturbingly relevant, twisty and powerful psychological thriller, The Closer I Get is also a searing commentary on the fragility and insincerity of online relationships, and the danger that can lurk just one ‘like’ away…’ Now doesn’t that sound like a very relevant read for today’s society, a world where many of us are addicted to our online relationships??

Tom is
Jun 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
O,what a tangled web we weave, when first we practise to deceive.

Ohhh boy,deception is most definitely the name of the game in this twisty, compelling tale of manipulation,deception,lies,obsession and the dangers of interacting with strangers on social media,especially when you are a well known person in the public domain.

The three main players in this disturbingly relevant thriller are Tom (the author) Emma (Tom's best friend) and Evie ( Tom's alleged stalker)

Tom's first novel was a bestseller
Toni | Dark Reads
Jul 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc-s, on-kindle-tbr
As always you can read all of my reviews on my blog -

Yikes! What an intensely dark read (see what I did there?!)

This is a story of Stalking, obsession, delusion, lies and deception and I loved every minute!

I find some of the scariest stories are the ones that can and do happen, The Closer I get is so relevant. The majority of use various social media platforms on a daily basis. I found this a really interesting premise, as a blogger the use of social media as a platform to
Apr 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I recently took this literary beauty to Scotland, amongst all family time I didn't get to greedily devour this dark and twisty thriller, but I got to snack on it one delicious bite at a time. That was until I couldn't take the teasing anymore and gulped the last third down during a five hour journey home, battling through the travel sickness. It was worth every tummy turn! The Closer I Get is a contemporary psychological thriller that will leave the reader stunned from how real the narrative is. ...more
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Closer I Get was a novel that I heard a lot about without really knowing it’s synopsis. That is, until I saw a link to an article in a newspaper article about what inspired the author to write it, which then inspired me to read the book as soon as I could.

Many people are on social media. Many post things that they wouldn’t say in real life, face to face. They get involved in disagreements that are best avoided, often using the hashtag. Some become stalkers. Evie is one of the few who do all
My goodness how I loved reading The Closer I Get (Orenda Books) by Paul Burston. The idea of writing about the dangers of Social Media and stalking really had my thinking about how we all interact with other. Many will know and follow me via Twitter and there were times when I switched off Twitter while I was reading Paul Burston’s brilliant taught thriller.

Novels are not just about the storyline they are nothing without characters and Paul has created and crafted some wonderful characters with
Dona Menzies
Jul 09, 2019 rated it did not like it
I kept reading this story thinking it would eventually start getting more interesting, since it was rated so well, but it never did. Finally, about 60% into the book, I started skimming, still thinking at least the ending was going to be worth something. But no, the ending was not that surprising and definitely not that interesting. What a waste of time.
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