The Girl at My Door, by Rebecca Griffiths

🎧 Audiobook review 🎧

The young friends were unaware of the man who had followed them through the park. With his trilby pulled down, he moved stealthily through the trees. He was careful and kept to the shadows. He worried it might not have been his wisest move to join the girl on the bench but hadn’t been able to resist seeing her sitting alone like that: she was his absolute ideal.

London 1949: Queenie Osbourne and her best friend Joy are walking through the bustling city streets looking forward to a bright future. The two friends have a striking beauty which draws everyone to them. Queenie dreams of making her fortune as a singer in America and Joy is engaged to wealthy bachelor Charles Gilchrist.

As they prepare for the wedding, it becomes clear that there is a spark between Queenie and Charles and soon they commit the ultimate betrayal. But Queenie’s dream is shattered in an instant when she discovers she is pregnant.

With nowhere else to turn, Queenie is told about a man named John Reginald Christie. He helps women like her and will keep her secret. But as she stands on the steps outside 10 Rillington Place, she feels instantly threatened.

On the other side of the door, Reg Christie is waiting. Queenie doesn’t know that he has been watching her for a long time. To Reg she is perfect in every way. Now, all she has to do is knock…

I was already somewhat familiar with the historical Rillington Place murders, so I was looking forward to a fictionalised take on the story and The Girl at My Door didn’t disappoint. Talk about flipping creepy…oh my goodness! The story centres around three fictional characters – Queenie, Joy and Terry and the drama within their lives that the author cleverly weaves into the very real nightmare that was John Reginald Christie, the infamous serial killer and alleged necrophile during the 40s/50s. This book had me dragging my hands down my face in horror, it was genuinely chilling and the author really did a good job of making me feel repulsed by Christie. I found the historical aspects of the book really well researched, this story felt like stepping back in time and had me intrigued by and googling so many things, like the perfume Queenie wore. I did like and feel for the fictional characters in the story, I wished things had been better for them. This book really highlights how bleak and dangerous things were for LGBTQ people and pregnant women, it wasn’t that long ago. The audiobook narration was fantastic, Johnathan Keeble and Daphne Kouma should get an award for this performance, it really was outstanding.

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