chai ♡'s Reviews > The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton
Rate this book
Clear rating

by
42130592
's review

really liked it
bookshelves: read-in-2018, favorites, young-adult, arc, fiction, adult, adult-thriller-mystery

I didn't expect to tear through this book, but I did—there was just so much restlessness in my reading, an urgency to reach the ending. It’s been days and I am still so keenly, strangely, extensively aware of explosions still taking place inside my head. Honestly? If Hollywood doesn't turn this into a movie....I will personally riot.

So, what's this book about?


Our narrator wakes up in a dripping forest, with nothing but the shade of an old unnameable fear, and the eerie sensation of being followed, an invisible gaze locked on his back. He has no recollection of who he is, and he has no more notion how he got there than he did the moon. But his head is firing thought after thought that can’t seem to complete themselves and they all begin with a name: Anna, and never seem to end.

He later learns that his name is Aiden Bishop and he’s trapped inside a stranger’s body. A masked figure curtly informs him that he must unveil a murder disguised as to not look like one if he wants to earn his release, and he must do so by reliving the day of the murder eight times, but each morning he will wake up in the body of a foreign soul. If he fails to uncover the name of the would-be murderer, he will return to the first day, memory moped clean, and start all over again as he has apparently already done innumerable times before.

Matters are made worse when Aiden realizes he isn’t the only one carried so long here and there on a stream and washed now to this strange shore: two other people are also ensnarled inside this time loop, and a knife-wielding Footman is out for their blood.

Aiden, Anna and the anonymous rivals are pieces on the game board, and there is everything at stake.

“How lost do you have to be to let the devil lead you home?” 


Normalcy has its place, but you won't find it in this book.

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle is a dazzling, mind-bending murder mystery…without a murder. It’s a locked-room thriller with a nearly imperceptible warp wavering in its center. A brilliantly balanced knife's edge of a book—unfolding gradually but deliberately, with secrets unveiled as more lies are told. Every sentence was a labyrinth to navigate and my mind often felt like a door blown open in a storm. The whole experience of reading this book felt like an elaborate lie to me, some made-up fantasyland I was locked in for a set number of hours a day. And like Aiden, every moment, I was caught between another dead end and another lead. So many pieces of the story but how the hell do they fit together?

In richness of ideas, and in glory of sentences, this book is spectacular. I was deeply impressed by the sense of scope, the minute turnings of characters and their choices and how those ripples affect other players, by the hints strewn like breadcrumbs throughout the narrative and the puzzle pieces that were constantly moving around. This was genuinely brilliant and so intricately crafted and I’m still left marveling at how one person’s brain can contain multitudes.

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle might be focused on the story of Aiden Bishop but the stories of many others are caught up in the wheel of his, and as that wheel turns, so do these many intertwined lives and fates. The narration lingers in the memories and lives of each “host”, dipping in and out of them like toes in a pool. The book makes you question what you know about these characters, their lives and their secrets. Everyone is unreliable, everything is questionable. Aiden’s very sense of self is threatened to be overruled by the personalities of his hosts, most of which were nasty pieces of work: more than slightly sexist, selfish, mean, manipulative, abusive, more often than not physical and moral cowards—yet still compelling even when you can’t bring yourself to like them even a little bit, and I think that says a lot for the author’s skill.

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle corkscrews into a tighter and tighter coil with every page and it isn't long before Aiden’s constant picking at the stray threads of his new jarring reality makes the whole come apart, revealing far more than was ever dreamt of. I did not see that ending coming at all, and I was left astounded into an awed slow-clap at everything the author has accomplished here.

When I flipped that last page, all I could do was breathe out, with the kind of eloquence and poise perfectly befitting the situation: "Holy shit. What did I just read?"

❗️TRIGGER WARNINGS❗️ fatphobia, murder, suicide, discussions around rape and sexual abuse, alcohol and drug use.
1341 likes · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle.
Sign In »

Reading Progress

July 24, 2018 – Shelved
September 18, 2018 – Started Reading
September 24, 2018 –
35.0% "I have come to the conclusion that any book with the words "seven" and "Evelyn" in its title is guaranteedly so fucking good"
September 30, 2018 –
84.0% "”Crows are gathering in the branches above me. [...] pressed together like mourners at a funeral.”

is that a Six of Crows reference"
October 1, 2018 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-50 of 88 (88 new)


Anukriti Geekybibliophilictraveller  Kaleidoscopicnerdy Albeit its slow pace, the loved the novel! The ending was a bang!


message 2: by Kayla (new) - added it

Kayla YASSS


message 3: by Birdie (new) - added it

Birdie I feel like all the people who religiously watch Buzzfeed Unsolved are kindred spirits, I have yet to be proven wrong


message 4: by Franka (new) - added it

Franka T. This was added to my to-read shelf the second I saw 'buzzfeed unsolved'


message 5: by Brian (new) - added it

Brian  9 ¾ ⚡ Yaaas!


message 6: by Rachel (new) - added it

Rachel I'm Buzzfeed Unsolved trash I love my ghostie bois


message 7: by Fefe (new) - added it

Fefe I love Buzzfeed Unsolved!!


message 8: by chai ♡ (last edited Sep 24, 2018 03:37AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

chai ♡ Anukriti wrote: "Albeit its slow pace, the loved the novel! The ending was a bang!"

I’m like 20% in and I’m already loving it so much wow


chai ♡ Kayla wrote: "YASSS"

🙌🏽🙌🏽


chai ♡ Ray wrote: "I feel like all the people who religiously watch Buzzfeed Unsolved are kindred spirits, I have yet to be proven wrong"

I agree 😊😊😊😊😊


✨    jamieson   ✨ OMG honestly I was telling myself we had to get into the theories like every single chapter fjdfjf


chai ♡ Franka wrote: "This was added to my to-read shelf the second I saw 'buzzfeed unsolved'"

i would read anything remotely associated with BU tbh so I feel this


chai ♡ Greg wrote: "What's with Sevens and Evelyns? At first glance, I thought it's just a new book cover of the Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo. Anyway, this is added to my to-read list."

omg right? they do make for an intriguing book title though lol


message 14: by Erin (new)

Erin Bembridge THIS LOOKS AND SOUNDS AMAZING!


BernLuvsBooks So glad you LOVED this amazing masterpiece Em!


message 16: by Minna (new) - added it

Minna I have the ARC and I'm almost afraid to read it but holy crap I'm excited


chai ♡ Brian wrote: "Yaaas!"

🙌🏽🙌🏽🙌🏽


chai ♡ Rachel wrote: "I'm Buzzfeed Unsolved trash I love my ghostie bois"

they’re such an iconic duo they deserve their own monument


chai ♡ Fefe wrote: "I love Buzzfeed Unsolved!!"

saaame!!!!


Tucker  (TuckerTheReader) I've heard so many good things about this book. I sent a request for it but it's a really lame one becuse I didn't want to read it at the time... :/


message 21: by Kadi (new) - added it

Kadi P AAAAH!!! I'm so glad you liked it! I am so READY to read this book. Downloaded it ages ago but haven't had the time to read it yet I've had so much work😭. Going to read it in the Christmas holiday hopefully. I've heard so many good reviews about this one


message 22: by Ruby (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ruby Chan Yes!This is SO GOOD and SO SMART.


chai ♡ ✨ jamieson ✨ wrote: "OMG honestly I was telling myself we had to get into the theories like every single chapter fjdfjf"

MOOD!! my theory was like....hmm aliens!! i can feel Shane’s disappointment from across the ocean


chai ♡ Erin wrote: "THIS LOOKS AND SOUNDS AMAZING!"

IT REALLY WAS


Stephanie Yesss!! I experience that exact feeling when I finish a great book, thank you for putting it into words! Gonna get me some of that weird monster milk.


chai ♡ (Bern) Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas wrote: "So glad you LOVED this amazing masterpiece Em!"

omg thank you!!!! I loved it so much I genuinely wouldn’t have put it down if I could get away with it!!


chai ♡ Minna wrote: "I have the ARC and I'm almost afraid to read it but holy crap I'm excited"

omg do it it’s so good!!!


chai ♡ Tucker wrote: "I've heard so many good things about this book. I sent a request for it but it's a really lame one becuse I didn't want to read it at the time... :/"

ooh I hope you get around to reading it it’s really great!!


modern day charlie chaplin whaaat the title sounds awfully similar to “the seven husbands of Evelyn Hugo”


message 30: by Sara (new) - added it

Sara Aouichi cant wait to get into this , i have it on my october TBR


chai ♡ Kadi wrote: "AAAAH!!! I'm so glad you liked it! I am so READY to read this book. Downloaded it ages ago but haven't had the time to read it yet I've had so much work😭. Going to read it in the Christmas holiday ..."

Yess!!! It’s honestly so good and I hope you love it!!!


chai ♡ Ruby wrote: "Yes!This is SO GOOD and SO SMART."

exactly!!! I was in awe tbh, even more when I read the interview with the author at the end!!


chai ♡ Stephanie wrote: "Yesss!! I experience that exact feeling when I finish a great book, thank you for putting it into words! Gonna get me some of that weird monster milk."

lol do it!!


chai ♡ a modern day charlie chaplin wrote: "whaaat the title sounds awfully similar to “the seven husbands of Evelyn Hugo”"

I knoooow I was so confused at first like what’s up with sevens and evelyns???? lol


chai ♡ Sara wrote: "cant wait to get into this , i have it on my october TBR"

it’s so good!! I hope you love it!!


message 36: by Taiwo (new) - added it

Taiwo | A Lifestyle Nerd I keep on seeing this book everywhere! I got an e-ARC of this from Netgalley a long time ago but I couldn't finish it. I don't remember why. All the positive reviews make me want to try it again ☺


chai ♡ Taiwo wrote: "I keep on seeing this book everywhere! I got an e-ARC of this from Netgalley a long time ago but I couldn't finish it. I don't remember why. All the positive reviews make me want to try it again ☺"

I really loved it! I hope you enjoy it the second time around!!


message 38: by Felicia (new) - added it

Felicia Fantastic review 💖 now I want to read this more than ever


message 39: by Mary (new) - added it

Mary S. R. That first paragraph 😂😂 great review!


message 40: by sb (new) - rated it 5 stars

sb THAT BOOK WAS AMAZING BUT THE ENDING WAS NOT OKAY I NEED MORE INFORMATION


chai ♡ Felicia wrote: "Fantastic review 💖 now I want to read this more than ever"

thank you so much <3 I hope you love it just as much!


chai ♡ Mary wrote: "That first paragraph 😂😂 great review!"

lol! thank you so much!!!


chai ♡ Sadie -+- Constellatiion wrote: "THAT BOOK WAS AMAZING BUT THE ENDING WAS NOT OKAY I NEED MORE INFORMATION"

OOF I KNOW! I was like, "wait...that's it???" also the whole "we decided not to hold grudges and move on" thing was sooo not me. watch me let my grudges age like fine wine dkshfkd


message 44: by sb (new) - rated it 5 stars

sb شيماء ✨ wrote: "Sadie -+- Constellatiion wrote: "THAT BOOK WAS AMAZING BUT THE ENDING WAS NOT OKAY I NEED MORE INFORMATION"

OOF I KNOW! I was like, "wait...that's it???" also the whole "we decided not to hold gru..."


that's the biggest mood, except i usually give up after like three days because i am a literal doormat


message 45: by fffrank! (new) - added it

fffrank! The first sentence made me chuckle like "eh-eh-heh". You're one of my favorites here, your reviews are always true, witty and well-written! 😍


chai ♡ Sadie -+- Constellatiion wrote: "شيماء ✨ wrote: "Sadie -+- Constellatiion wrote: "THAT BOOK WAS AMAZING BUT THE ENDING WAS NOT OKAY I NEED MORE INFORMATION"

OOF I KNOW! I was like, "wait...that's it???" also the whole "we decided..."


my memory is shit but AS SOON AS I REMEMBER HOW YOU HAVE WRONGED ME ITS OVER FOR U HO


chai ♡ HeartlessFaeKing wrote: "The first sentence made me chuckle like "eh-eh-heh". You're one of my favorites here, your reviews are always true, witty and well-written! 😍"

I’m smiling so hard omg this is so kind of you to say thank you so much 💕


message 48: by fffrank! (new) - added it

fffrank! And i'm smiling so hard beacuse you loved it. 😅 I always sound creepy for some reasons when i want to be kind xD


Maureen Huerter It totally confused me.


MISSed Bandwagon I love the fact that you included the quote “How lost do you have to be to let the devil lead you home?” I never forgot it and I hold it close to me when thinking about hard times in my life.


« previous 1
back to top