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Review: The Gilded Cage by Camilla Läckberg

Cover of the English version


People would kill to have Faye von Essen’s life. She lives in an ultra-swanky apartment in the most exclusive area of Stockholm, she has a gorgeous husband who gives her everything she’s ever wanted, and she has an adorable daughter who lights up her world. Faye’s life is perfect.

So how is it, then, that she now finds herself in a police station?

The truth is that Faye’s life is far from what it seems. The truth is that Faye isn’t even her real name. And now she’s been caught out. There’s no way she’s going to go down without a fight. The only question is – who will escape with their life?

This book is amazing. Seriously. In this book, Läckberg has taken everything she’s learned writing crime fiction and turned it on its head.
This time she writes from the perspective of a villain.
It is a villain whose evil deeds are, some would say, justified, but she is a villain none the less. Faye, the main character of this book, is, at her core, a revengeful and evil person. But it’s worth noting that most of the other characters in this book are also evil. Especially Faye’s dad and ex-husband Jack, the targets of her revenge plots. It’s just that Faye is the most evil of them all.
But Läckberg contrasts Faye’s evil character with a best friend, Chris, who is really nice and happy. She helps highlight Faye’s redeeming qualities, which is vitally important in order for a character such as Faye to carry the book on her evil shoulders. This book is perfect example of how to write a villain. And I’m not talking about a villain in the “opposition to the hero” sense here – in this book, Faye IS the hero. But the things she does undoubtedly make her a villain. None the less, Läckberg has given her so many redeeming qualities that it’s sometimes easy to forget that fact.
Läckberg had me glued to every page – this book is a masterpiece.

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