The Appeal- Book review

It does still fascinate me how the cover of a book can make you decide within seconds whether or not you want to read it. I had never heard of Janice Hallett but have seen her books in WH Smith’s and been intrigued by them but as I am still working my way through The Morland Dynasty on my Kindle I don’t buy actual books at the moment. I add them to my Want To Read list on Good Reads. I used my last credit to download The Appeal from Audible a few days ago.

Synopsis from Good Reads

The Fairway Players, a local theatre group, is in the midst of rehearsals when tragedy strikes the family of director Martin Hayward and his wife Helen, the play’s star. Their young granddaughter has been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, and with an experimental treatment costing a tremendous sum, their cast mates rally to raise the money to give her a chance at survival. But not everybody is convinced of the experimental treatment’s efficacy—or of the good intentions of those involved. As tension grows within the community, things come to a shocking head at the explosive dress rehearsal. The next day, a dead body is found, and soon, an arrest is made. In the run-up to the trial, two young lawyers sift through the material—emails, messages, letters—with a growing suspicion that the killer may be hiding in plain sight. The evidence is all there, between the lines, waiting to be uncovered.

As I mentioned above I used my last credit to buy The Appeal as an audiobook, I had never picked up the book or read any reviews, I bought it based only on the book cover. So let me tell you when it first started I was a little bit horrified. I actually thought ‘how on earth am I supposed to listen to this??’ If like me you haven’t looked inside the cover of this book you would not know it is written in the form of emails and texts, and this at first on Audible felt like a big mistake. BUT I am so glad I didn’t give up like I very nearly did because you really do get to know each character through their communication with each other and honestly I ended up loving this book! I enjoy a ‘whodunnit’ anyway (massive Agatha Christie fan over here) but this was just a little bit different. You don’t even find out who dies until about half way in and then it’s so interesting trying to figure out who actually did do it. I’m usually quite good at working out the murderer, because I have read so many of this type but on this occasion I didn’t work it out. Obviously having only listened to the book I can’t say whether the audio book is better or not but I do think it helped as the narrators read each email in the tone of voice they were intended, so you could easily hear if they were sad or angry etc…


There are a few little plot twists throughout and I really enjoyed getting to know the characters on a deeper level than you may usually and it’s clever how they gossip among themselves telling you the story without knowing that they are…

I would highly recommend this first novel by Janice Hallett. I devoured it in just over two days, listening at every chance. In the car, cooking dinner, doing the washing. It even made doing the ironing enjoyable. I was quite sad when it came to an end so I immediately bought The Twyford Code, her next book and have high hopes for this one too. Review pending…

Have you read The Appeal? Actual book or Audio? Did you enjoy it as much as I did?

NJ x

One thought on “The Appeal- Book review

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s