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Safe House

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  844 ratings  ·  173 reviews
She’s paid the price for giving her ex a false alibi, and now she’s moved to a seaside village to escape her past–but more than her lie follows her there in this chilling and twisty psychological thriller from the author of the acclaimed The Exes’ Revenge.

One day, a woman turns up in a remote coastal village. She’s bought a crumbling, long-vacant cottage and calls herself
Paperback, 352 pages
Published March 10th 2020 by Berkley (first published October 31st 2019)
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Average rating 3.82  · 
Rating details
 ·  844 ratings  ·  173 reviews

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Nov 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
**3.5 stars *

When Steffi Finn provided a false alibi for her controlling boyfriend Lee Fisher, she had no idea how bad that decision was, but it sees them both serve a prison sentence, and in Steffi’s case it comes with numerous death threats too.

On her release from prison she assumes a new identity under the name of Charlie Miller, and moves hundreds of miles away from her home in Sheffield to a small village on the Cornish coast.

Initially Charlie keeps herself to herself, but as with most s
Mar 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Is it possible to simply start over?

Steffi Finn trusted the wrong man. Young, foolish and in love, she ignores all the obvious warning signs. Something about love being blind? This, despite the fact that young local women are being murdered. And when the police came knocking? Well, what’s a love-struck girl to do? Naturally Steffi quickly gives her boyfriend the alibi he desperately needs. I mean, he couldn’t be guilty...right!?💁🏻♀️

No big surprise when everything goes sideways, and Steffi su
Nilufer Ozmekik
Feb 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is riveting, interesting, fast pacing story. It is not mind blowing kind of terrifying, nail biter but mostly it is really well written and capturing your focus. It starts as five starred reading with intriguing plot, good characterization (you deeply feel for Steffi a.k.a Charlie) but in the middle you just lose your interest and it drops to 2 or 3 starred reading and thankfully ending was satisfying and it hooks you again and you tell yourself: “Okay, that is not one of the best thrillers ...more
Susanne  Strong
Mar 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
3.75 Stars

Sometimes, no matter what the circumstance, you should trust your instincts.

Every Step You Take
Every Move You Make
Every Breath You Take
I’ll Be Watching You
The Police, 1983

Charlie Miller desperately needs to start fresh. An ex-con, with a new name, Charlie Miller is now living in a small Cornish village far from her home. Charlie was once known as Steffi Finn, girlfriend to serial murderer, Lee. Steffi was accused of giving a false alibi to the police and served two years in prison. T
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
Mar 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
Steffi is guilty of giving her ex a false alibi, and she’s going into hiding in a seaside village. She buys an old cottage and gives herself a new name, Charlie Miller. She’s mostly a recluse.

In the past, Charlie served two years for providing the false alibi. She didn’t believe her boyfriend was guilty, but she was wrong, and now she just wants to start over.

Eventually, Charlie gets to know her neighbors and comes out of her shell. All the while, she feels as if she’s being watched. A friend of
Katie B
Jan 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars

Loved the premise for this one as it's about a woman who just got out of prison for providing a false alibi. She's looking to start over under a new name and in a new town but someone out there thinks she got off too easy. Better watch your back lady! The story lost a bit of steam starting somewhere in the second half but things definitely got interesting towards the end.

Steffi Finn needs a fresh start. She gave a false alibi to police when they came around asking questions about her b
Louise Wilson
Oct 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Steffi has just been released from prison. She buys a run down cottage that she intends to renovate herself. She changes her name to Charlie and starts her new life in a small Cornish village. She soon starts to make new friends, even with the grumpy old man who lives next door. But then strange things start to happen around her. She feels that she is being watched. Has her past came back to haunt her.

There's quite a lot of backstory to contend with. There are parts that seem to drag on. Charlie
Mandy White (mandylovestoread)
Safe House by Jo Jakeman. This book was an enjoyable enough read but it never really captured me, the beginning was good but I felt that in the middle it got a bit slow and then then the ending felt rushed and way over the top. I was expecting a lot more from the story from the synopsis.

Charlie is new to the small remote Cornish town and ready for a new start. She has just been released from prison where she was serving time for providing her then boyfriend Lee a false alibi. Back then she was
Oct 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Steffi Finn was in love with her man. So when he told her that the police were trying to fit him up for something he hadn’t done, she lied for him. Said he was with her all night. Because that’s what you do, right? You protect the ones you care about. Most of all, you believe them. In cases like this, you have to believe them. Otherwise those questions about missing women mean there’s something a whole lot worse going on than you just making a mistake….

And boy was she ever wrong, with a prison s
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Where would you go if you had just been released from prison and knew everyone hated you for what you had done?​

Steffi Finn, now known as Charlie Miller, went to a remote town....a town with gossipy women. Was this a good idea?

​​Small towns have small-town ways of protecting each other and are suspicious of outsiders.​​

The women welcomed Charlie and even invited her to their book club meetings, but they and an elderly neighbor didn’t understand why she would move so far from the city unless she
Mar 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.75 stars rounded up.

In Safe House, Steffi Finn was imprisoned for lying about her boyfriend’s whereabouts when he was being investigated for the disappearance of a woman. She couldn’t fathom that the man she loved could possibly be involved. The evidence is conclusive, and it is uncovered that he has murdered two women. While in jail, Steffi receives loads of hate mail – the public had no sympathy for her.

With the hope of starting a new life after being released from jail, Steffi reinvents he
Jan 21, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After being released from prison Stephanie Finn turns up in a small Cornish village, desperate to put the past behind her. She’s given herself a new name too, Charlie Miller, in the hope that no one can track her down. After all, she was in prison for providing a false alibi for her boyfriend who murdered a young girl. And there are many people out there who hold her partly to blame. Will Charlie ever be able to relax or will she be looking over her shoulder forever?

This was a really interestin
Isabel • The Crime Bookshelf
3.5 STARS.

Thank you so much to Berkley for the gifted ARC of SAFE HOUSE! This was such a quick and easy read 🙌🏼 I flew through this book not only because of how light of a read it was, but also because it was super intriguing 🤓⁣

What I really enjoyed about this book was how easy it was to get into the story. The first few chapters were so incredibly intriguing to me that I just HAD to know what was going to happen. I also really enjoyed the format and felt like it was perfect for this book. Ea
Nov 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a slow burn suspense. Having read the previous book by this author, I was eager to get my hooks into this one.

Steffi had given false alibi for boyfriend and was realesed after being in jail for 10 months. She decided to move to Cornwall with a new identity, but felt someone stalking her. Was it real or just paranoia?

This was quite a mind bender of a read with the writing making the atmosphere take on a claustrophobic feel. The plot twists occured later down the pages. Overall a fun rea
Laurie • The Baking Bookworm
3.5 STARS - Safe House is a story about past mistakes and how quickly you can lose yourself and change your future if you trust the wrong person. In her second thriller, Jakeman weaves a slow-burn suspense story that combines some intense scenes and a main character whose choices will make readers question her intentions.

The story is told using dual timelines. The first focuses on Steffi's new life as Charlie Miller as she tries to quietly start over after serving ten months in prison for giving
★★★ 3.5 stars

I've not read Jo Jakeman before so I wasn't sure what to expect from SAFE HOUSE. I wasn't disappointed but I wasn't wowed either. I think the story had great potential to be better, though it was still reasonably enjoyable.

It's the first day of Charlie Miller's life. That is, as Charlie Miller. For that isn't her real name...just her new one. She used to be Steffi Finn and she has just been released from prison after serving a 10 month sentence for perverting the course of justice w
Shruti Ramanujam
Dec 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Actual rating: 4.5 out of 5

Safe House is a gripping tale filled with twists, lies, and deception. It's the perfect psychological thriller for cold weather and I can't recommend it enough!

Read the entire review on This is Lit.
Kelly Van Damme
Bloody brilliant!
Joanne Robertson
Nov 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Charlie has bought a new property in Cornwall. It’s a total wreck but she’s determined to do it up and live a quiet and peaceful life there. Unfortunately, Charlie’s new abode may not be the safe haven that she’s been hoping for as she’s convinced that someone is out there, watching her. The more we find out about “Charlie”, the more we realise that she’s hiding behind her new identity to keep her former name and past a secret. But even constantly looking over her shoulder isn’t going to keep he ...more
Cassie’s Reviews
Mar 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
Do you think it’s possible to start over by simply changing your name and moving to a different city? Will that change your past? Steffi Finn fell in love and trusted the wrong man Lee Fisher. Steffi unknowingly gave him a false alibi Lee could be a bit controlling but she loved him , she knew he lied occasionally but she chose to see only the good. When the police knock on her door and inform her that Lee has been charged with murder, and now she’s going to prison for covering for him she’s sho ...more
Melanie’s reads
Ooo that Jo Jakeman is a clever little bugger. I thought I had it pegged and I was, as the saying goes “close but no cigar”. I really should pay more attention as she had carefully laid clues in such a subtle way that this oaf missed them until it was too late. Now I love red herrings and unreliable narrators but what I really love is being misdirected even though the clues are there all along if you look hard enough. So when all is revealed you slap your forehead and shout god I’m a dimwit.

I lo
Lel Budge
Nov 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Steffi Finn is in prison, serving 10 months for giving a false alibi for her boyfriend, Lee. The relationship had been one sided and very coercive, but she loved Lee….but he had then killed another woman…

On her release, she moves to Cornwall, takes a new identity, Charlie Miller, and settles into life in a small community.

However, she starts to feel she is being watched, is this paranoia? Or is someone really watching, someone who knows her real identity?

This is quite a gentle psychological thri
Shalini | Book Rambler
The pacing was good even if I had a bit of trouble getting into it during the beginning. The setting of the village where Steffi/Charlie settled and the uneasiness she felt every moment was perfectly written. I liked the unpredictability of the twists as the author kept my mind working to find out who Steffi/Charlie’s stalker was and why was he/she(/they) were trying to kill her.

Overall, I would recommend this book if you’re looking for a slow-burn thriller with a captivating female lead. This s
Apr 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book grabbed me from beginning to end - read a lot today because I had to find out how it ended!!! Jo Jakeman did an excellent job in creating suspense and adding surprise twists to the plot!!!
Yesha- Books Teacup and Reviews
You can read all my review on Blog - Books Teacup and Reviews

Safe House was intriguing psychological thriller that revolved around Charlie, desperate to put behind her past, murderer ex and hate-filled judgmental people of the town. The book was about seeing the signs and heed to warning bells before it’s too late, misreading and misjudging a person, guilt, betrayal, manipulation, lies, deceit, blind love, unhealthy relationship, and facing past to give it closure.

I have just one word to descri
Adrian Scottow
Aug 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A woman moves to a sleepy Cornish village to try and escape her past but her secrets follow her.

I really enjoyed the setting and characters in this book - Charlie is complex - trusting and open and entirely believable. Her past relationship with her ex - Lee is the root of her troubles and I liked the way the past and current interwove until we had the complete picture. I really enjoyed the twists and turns along the way - Jo had me questioning everybody and everything. The Cornish village feel
Oct 31, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My Thoughts:

Safe House is Jakeman's second novel. Sticks and Stones was her debut novel. I haven't read her first but I definitely will now.

I have to firstly say well done to Jo Jakeman for writing this mysterious, psychological thriller. You really messed with my head. This was one of those books that I couldn't put down, a proper page turner.

Ok, so the story goes like this...

Steffi Finn loved her boyfriend. She didn't query when the police came asking questions about his whereabouts on the
When life for the entire universe and planet turns on its end and like everyone else you "have nothing to do" while your place of work is closed, superspeed readers like me can read 250+ pages/hour, so yes, I have read the book … and many more today.

I requested and received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley, the publisher and the author in exchange for an honest review.

From the publisher, as I do not repeat the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them
May 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobooks
Published on Peeking Between the Pages (

So let’s talk about Safe House by Jo Jakeman. I read The Exes’ Revenge by this author and really liked it so when I saw this one I didn’t hesitate to give it a listen. Once again it was well worth it as I really enjoyed it.

We meet Charlie who has had her share of hard knocks. She ended up serving time in jail for giving her ex a false alibi. She didn’t do it on purpose. She just believed in the innocence of her boy
Samantha March
May 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Exes’ Revenge is still a book I think about, so when I was asked to review the latest from Jo Jakeman, I was all for it. We follow Steffi Finn, who has a new identity as Charlie Miller after being released from prison. Steffi was serving a sentence for lying and providing an alibi to her boyfriend, who is now also in prison for the murder of multiple women. She needs a fresh start and new name, and moves to a seaside village to begin her life again.
We do get multiple POVs in here and we are
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“Penny ordered drinks - a large latte with a shot of caramel syrup for Decca and a green tea for herself. Charlie thought what people drank told you as much about them as any number of psychological tests. Decca's coffee was decadent, comforting, and perhaps a little bit naughty, just like she was. Penny's tea was an acquired taste. It screamed out worthiness. Hard work but probably worth it in the end.” 0 likes
“She ventured out of the village that morning for what her mum would have called life's little luxuries. A soft gray dressing gown, a matching towel, and bubble bath promising the healing properties of sea kelp. Charlie knew there wasn't a big enough bottle enough to heal her wounds, but she was willing to begin the process. Penderrion was getting to her if she thought that anything with "sea" in the title could be soothing instead of threatening.” 0 likes
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