“ I raced through this gripping tale of domesticity and deceit. Cleveland deliciously ratchets up the tension at every turn . . . you won't be able to put it down until the final, stunning page! ”
SHARI LAPENA, author of THE COUPLE NEXT DOOR
“ Heart-poundingly suspenseful and heart-wrenchingly insightful, NEED TO KNOW hums with authentic detail, crisp storytelling, and characters that will long stay in your thoughts. ”
J. P. DELANEY, author of THE GIRL BEFORE
“ This compulsive, clever thriller will have you reading long into the night. ”
“ If you liked THE COUPLE NEXT DOOR, try NEED TO KNOW by Karen Cleveland . . . Thrillers don't get much more twisty and turny than this one. If you don't mind staying up reading til 3am, this is the one for you. ”
BBC Arts and Entertainment, 'Books To Look Out For in 2018'
“ Impressively compelling . . . this is probably the banker among the New Year crop thanks to its sheer page-turning readability. ”
John Williams, Mail on Sunday
“ The heart-stopping plot barely lets up pace throughout this brilliant novel. ”
“ You'll devour this terrific debut like the rest of us, skipping lunch, losing sleep, turning pages until the end, where we're all left waiting for more. ”
“ Karen Cleveland is the real deal - an exciting new voice in thrillers. ”
“ Prediction: if you read chapter one, you'll read chapter two. If you read chapter two, you'll miss dinner, stay up far too late, and feel tired at work tomorrow. This is that kind of book. Superb. ”
“ Remarkable ”
Sunday Times Magazine - Thriller of the Month
“ An immensely satisfying story with serpentine twists and turns . . . ingenious and compelling. ”
“ Hold on tight! What a story, brilliantly told. A gripping espionage thriller with real psychological depth. More modern than tomorrow. ”
TERRY HAYES, author of I AM PILGRIM
“ Need to Know carves out a uniquely compelling space among thrillers: high-stakes international intrigue combined with high-drama domestic suspense. These richly overlapping layers of tension create a fast-paced, relentlessly gripping read. ”
CHRIS PAVONE, author of THE EXPATS
“ First word to last, I needed to know! Karen Cleveland's spy thriller about a wife, mother and CIA analyst on the prowl for a Russian cell is a timely dance of intrigue and deception. There are two female heroes here . . . the author, an actual CIA analyst, and the terrific protagonist she creates. One of my favourite espionage thrillers in a long time. ”
JULIA HEABERLIN, author of BLACK-EYED SUSANS
“ Gripping, tense, and packed full of insider knowledge. A need-to-read. ”
MICK HERRON, author of DEAD LIONS
“ Need to Know is a pure page-turner . . . a brilliantly executed spy thriller with a terrific female lead. I raced through it in a weekend. ”
PAULA DALY, author of THE MISTAKE I MADE
“ An early contender for next year's Gone Girl ”
“ Dramatic and gripping . . . a tense and original thriller ”
“ Annoyingly for hype-haters, NEED TO KNOW is pretty great too . . . a former CIA analyst has had the neat idea of combining the old-school paranoia of the spy story with the more modern paranoia of the domestic thriller. ”
“ An impressively taut and dynamic debut. ”
Mail on Sunday
“ If there's a red hot debut of 2018, this is it . . . a belter of an espionage thriller mixed with domestic suspense. ”
“ Remarkable . . . Cleveland deftly brings together old-school espionage and contemporary cyber war in a novel that may well be the best fusion of the two to date. ”
Sunday Times Magazine - Thriller of the Month
“ An impressive debut from an author who worked for the CIA and uses her experience to pose an interesting moral dilemma. ”
I stand in the doorway of the twins’ room and watch them sleep, peaceful and innocent, through crib slats that remind me of bars on a prison cell.
A night-light bathes the room in a soft orange glow. Furniture crowds the small space, far too much of it for a room this size. Cribs, one old, one new. A changing table, stacks of diapers still in their plastic. The bookcase Matt and I assembled ourselves, ages ago. Its shelves now sag, overloaded with the books I could recite by heart to the older two, the ones I’ve been vowing to read more often to the twins, if only I could find the time.
I hear Matt’s footsteps on the stairs and my hand clenches around the flash drive. Tight, like if I squeeze hard enough, it’ll disappear. Everything will go back to the way it was. The past two days will be erased, nothing more than a bad dream. But it’s still there: hard, solid, real.
The hallway floor creaks where it always does. I don’t turn. He comes up behind me, close enough that I can smell his soap, his shampoo, the smell of him that’s always been oddly comforting, that now inexplicably makes him more of a stranger. I can feel his hesitation.
‘Can we talk?’ he says.Continue Reading