“Blue Monday” by Nicci French – Book Review

As a long-time fan of Nicci French novels I was delighted when my ‘in-person’ bookclub, Whodunit, selected “Blue Monday” as our group read for the month of September.

Blue Monday coverThe first novel to feature Frieda Klein, a solitary, sometimes stern, unmarried, childless woman in early middle-age who works as a psychoanalyst in London.

Frieda’s character fascinated me.  She is a study in contrasts.  She is a risk taker with seemingly little regard for her own personal safety.  She goes for solitary walks through London in the dead of night to tire herself when suffering from insomnia.  She doesn’t have a cell phone, preferring to be adrift and out of contact when not at work.  Yet… Frieda loves her house, a dark and comfortable oasis which she deems a place of cleanliness and sanctuary.  She has a penchant for structure, rules, and orderliness.

Frieda loves London and the affection of place is obvious in the atmospheric “Blue Monday”. However, she holds little affection for her family whom she feels do not value her, nor she them.  She prefers the well denoted boundaries of her work relationships to those of a personal nature, though recently she has fallen for a man whose presence could upset the structure of her well-ordered life.  Will her longing and affection for him allow her to forfeit the life she has built for herself?

When one of Freida’s clients leads her to believe that he may be implicated in a child abduction, Frieda surrenders her professional ethics and goes to the police.  The policeman in charge of the case is at first skeptical, but she ultimately wins his trust and professional respect.  Together they chase down leads and encounter shocking revelations whilst searching for a young, abducted boy.  They discover that this case may be linked to another similar case which took place over twenty years ago…

Many themes are touched upon in “Blue Monday“.  Professional ethics, guilt, nature vs. nurture, the merits of psychoanalysis, the damage caused by child abduction, human foibles, secrets, and more.

A thought-provoking, fast-paced, well written thriller containing several twists and a surprise ending, this novel will appeal to fans of psychological suspense. I always enjoy novels which accurately portray the contradictions and uncertainties inherent in human behavior and this one does that very successfully.  Highly recommended.

I am astounded by the seamless narrative written by this husband and wife team.  You can read more novels featuring Frieda Klein in their subsequent novels:

  1.  Blue Monday
  2.  Tuesday’s gone
  3.  Waiting for Wednesday
  4.  Thursday’s children
  5.  Friday on my mind


Nicci Gerrard & Sean FrenchNicci French is pen name of English authors Nicci Gerrard and Sean French, who write psychological thriller novels together. Gerrard and French were married in 1990. They write separately and then re-write each other’s work. Both authors have also written solo novels.

About Fictionophile

Fiction reviewer ; Goodreads librarian. Retired library cataloger - more time to read! Loves books, gardening, and red wine. I have been a reviewer member of NetGalley since October 2013. I review titles offered by Edelweiss, and participate in blog tours with TLC Book Tours.
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4 Responses to “Blue Monday” by Nicci French – Book Review

  1. Pingback: 2018: #7 – Blue Monday (Nicci French) – Confessions of a Bibliophile

  2. Diane Coto says:

    I’ve been quite drawn to ‘nature vs. nurture’ novels. The field is wide open for fiction. 🙂
    @dino0726 from 
    FictionZeal – Impartial, Straightforward Fiction Book Reviews


  3. skyecaitlin says:

    This sounds wonderful: I have always wanted to read her/his books


  4. gkdewolfe says:

    Okay, Lynne, you just explained how Nicci and Sean each write a chapter…..thanks for that. I didn’t understand how the chapters could flow like they do. It, obviously, works for this couple!!


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