Review: TRY NOT TO BREATHE by Holly Seddon

February 9, 2016 | RRP $29.99


You will not be able to put this psychological thriller by Holly Seddon down once you start. You have been warned! I have held it gripped in my hands for a day, feverishly turning pages, even while I was cooking.

The story is essentially a cold case, psychological suspense. The main character is a disgraced female journalist, Alex. Alex’s story is a redemption story, and we follow her hoping that the case will spark some much needed changes in her crumbling life.  Seddon manages the difficult task of creating connection with alcoholic and often unsympathetic Alex very well.

The victim of the crime, Amy, is trapped in a coma like state. Seddon uses insights from inside the mind of Amy to brilliant effect. Like a fishing line, Amy’s naive internal contemplations tugged me through the story in a forward direction. All other characters cast their line backwards, searching the past for vital clues. The intersection of these points, like tangles in fishing line, revealed the story in a highly satisfying way.

While there have been comparisons to the GIRL ON THE TRAIN, this book stands on its own merit. What it does share? A female, alcoholic protagonist and all that brings, it is well written, fast paced, intriguing, there is mystery to be solved.

A very enjoyable read that I couldn’t put down. If you are a fan of this genre you will love TRY NOT TO BREATHE by Holly Seddon.


Educated at Grammar school in Devon, but never quite making it to university, Holly Seddon instead became a freelance writer almost straight out of college. In 2003, she launched her own music website, Muso’s Guide, from the kitchen of her house, partly in protest at not being given a job at NME. Holly has written features on everything from colonic irrigation to robot butlers. As a freelance writer, she has been published on national newspaper websites, magazines and leading consumer websites. From 2010 to 2012, Holly wrote ‘Mumblings’, an irreverent column on motherhood, for award-winning Vine magazine.

A mother of four, Holly’s time is divided between writing fiction, writing articles, walking Arnie the miniature Schnauzer and chasing homework-evaders around the living room. And then some more writing when night falls.

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