The Ecliptic by Benjamin Wood is not your usual fast-paced thriller.  Instead, it is a coil that continuously and artfully compresses until the very last chapters.

When we first meet the narrator, Knell, she has lived at an artists’ retreat for almost a decade.  Like everyone at Portmantle, she has scrapped her real identity and adheres to strict guidelines regarding daily life that allow the retreat to function continuously and in complete secrecy.  In return, the artists secure solitude and a hiatus from daily worries in the hope that inspiration will return.  The arrival of a troubled and exasperating young man serves as the impetus for huge, and possibly dangerous, changes at Portmantle.

As events proceed, the narration twists together Knell’s personal history and the events unraveling at Portmantle.  What follows is a quiet, intense read about a desperate search for redemption, independence, personal worth, truth and inspiration.  Although you may not always understand why certain information is being presented, in the end, it all makes complete sense.  The true test of any thriller!

I have just finished this novel, and now, I am going back to reread it.  I must find the clues I missed the first time around.