When No One Is Watching: A Thriller (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews


This is a must-read thriller rooted deeply in Brooklyn and its racist past. As the neighborhood makes plans for the annual block party, Sydney ends up battling more than the microaggressions from her new white neighbors. When her best friends go missing, her mom's prized garden is threatened, and a fake meter reader breaks into her home, she will put everything on the line to get out alive. At least she's got a semi-charming, well-meaning Theo by her side.

— Christy

Description


"From the first page of WHEN NO ONE IS WATCHING, I felt like I was right there in the gentrifying Brooklyn neighborhood, filled with sharply etched characters and dialogue that zings. Then bam!  I was knocked over by the momentum of an intense psychological thriller that doesn’t let go until the final page. This is a terrific read." – Alafair Burke, New York Times bestselling author

Rear Window meets Get Out in this gripping thriller from a critically acclaimed and New York Times Notable author, in which the gentrification of a Brooklyn neighborhood takes on a sinister new meaning…

Sydney Green is Brooklyn born and raised, but her beloved neighborhood seems to change every time she blinks. Condos are sprouting like weeds, FOR SALE signs are popping up overnight, and the neighbors she’s known all her life are disappearing. To hold onto her community’s past and present, Sydney channels her frustration into a walking tour and finds an unlikely and unwanted assistant in one of the new arrivals to the block—her neighbor Theo.

But Sydney and Theo’s deep dive into history quickly becomes a dizzying descent into paranoia and fear. Their neighbors may not have moved to the suburbs after all, and the push to revitalize the community may be more deadly than advertised.

When does coincidence become conspiracy? Where do people go when gentrification pushes them out? Can Sydney and Theo trust each other—or themselves—long enough to find out before they too disappear?

About the Author


Alyssa Cole is an award-winning author of historical, contemporary, and sci-fi romance. Her contemporary rom-com A Princess in Theory was one of the New York Times’ 100 Notable Books of 2018, and her books have received critical acclaim from Library Journal, BuzzFeed, Kirkus, Booklist, Jezebel, Vulture, Book Riot, Entertainment Weekly, and various other outlets. When she’s not working, she can usually be found watching anime or wrangling her many pets.

Praise For…


"From the first page of WHEN NO ONE IS WATCHING, I felt like I was right there in the gentrifying Brooklyn neighborhood, filled with sharply etched characters and dialogue that zings. Then bam!  I was knocked over by the momentum of an intense psychological thriller that doesn’t let go until the final page. This is a terrific read."
— Alafair Burke, New York Times bestselling author

“Masterfully written suspense. Beneath a seemingly ordinary setting, Cole weaves layers of dread, all building toward a shocking and satisfying conclusion."
— Kelley Armstrong, #1 New York Times bestselling author of City of the Lost 

“With a keen eye for details, Alyssa Cole deftly unspools a rich narrative with compelling characters who live and breathe against a vibrant backdrop. From the bold first line to the exquisitely subtle last, WHEN NO ONE IS WATCHING is a top-notch page-turner!”
— Wendy Corsi Staub, New York Times bestselling author

"Dread builds and mutates into near-horror... It was eye-opening, sad, shocking, gripping, I devoured it in one go. I recommend SO HIGHLY." 
— Marian Keyes, #1 bestselling author

"this outstanding thriller... builds to a credible finale. This stellar and unflinching look at racism and greed will have readers hooked til the end."
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“[A] searing indictment of the inseparable evils of racism and gentrification wrapped in an anxiety-inducing thriller with elements of romance and horror… Cole expertly layers plot twists, raising the stakes until the dramatic finale, and readers will cheer when the real heroes are revealed. Cole is a sure-bet suggestion for romance readers, and When No One Is Watching will expand her already enthusiastic audience.”
Booklist (starred review)

"Suspense at its best... you aren’t going to be able to put it down until you finish it..."
— Book Riot (Best Books We Read in June)

“To turn a knotty social and economic issue into a riveting psychological thriller is no easy task, but then again, should we really be surprised the extraordinary Alyssa Cole has done it? When No One Is Watching uproots the steady gentrification of Brooklyn and transforms it into an eerie horror story where "revitalization" itself is the monster.”
— Elle (The 40 Best New Books Of Summer 2020)


“This book was a lot of fun, sexy, with a compelling story. I really enjoyed the romance... Lots of erotic tension and a deeply satisfying ending. Definitely dive into this one.”
— Roxane Gay on A Princess in Theory

“Cole does the seemingly impossible, using the Civil War as a backdrop for a realistic, gripping interracial romance that interrogates slavery, systemic racism, and more, while still remaining utterly swoon-worthy.” 
— Entertainment Weekly on An Extraordinary Union, Top 10 Romances of 2017

“Cole deftly interweaves the fraught realities of American history with romance and adventure — this is a spy story, after all — and it is elegantly told.” 
Vulture.com on An Extraordinary Union

“Her prose is flawless. Her historical research is absorbing, and her characters are achingly human. This book is fantastic” 
— Kirkus Reviews (starred review) on A Hope Divided  

“Cole is known for romance, but don’t let that fool you into thinking she can’t genre-jump with ease. Her first thriller, When No One is Watching, is a triumph. Sydney Green is a well-crafted protagonist and her paranoia is justified in this poignant story, which has a lot to say about racism and gentrification in America... It’s page-turning and engrossing all the while giving a history lesson on racial disparities and inequality. A timely read, and an incredibly smart writer.”
— Crime Reads
Product Details
ISBN: 9780062982650
ISBN-10: 0062982656
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Publication Date: September 1st, 2020
Pages: 368
Language: English