Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney

Blog tour: 17 to 21 August 2021


Ten years of marriage.
Ten years of secrets.
An anniversary they’ll never forget.

Adam and Amelia are spending the weekend in the Scottish Highlands. The remote location is perfect for what they have planned.

But when their romantic trip takes a dark turn, they both start to wonder – can they trust the one they’re with?

Because every couple tells little white lies. Only for Adam and Amelia, the truth is far more dangerous.

My review

Adam and Amelia Wright are spending their wedding anniversary in a remote chapel in the Scottish Highlands. They’ve driven up from London and the journey has been rather scary as it’s snowing and Amelia’s Morris Minor Traveller is struggling to cope with the wintry conditions! Their giant black Labrador, Bob, is also with them.

The couple are both in their forties. Adam is a workaholic screenwriter and Amelia works for Battersea Dogs Home and she won the weekend away in the staff Christmas raffle. Their marriage is faltering and they’re hoping that some time away together will help them reconnect.

Adam suffers from a rare neurological condition called prosopagnosia (face blindness), which means that he doesn’t recognise faces, including his own or his wife’s, and can’t see their distinguishing features or facial expressions. He uses other strategies to recognise people like their smell, the sound of their voice or their touch.

When they arrive at the chapel after their long and arduous journey, the whole weekend already seems a disaster, especially when they see their accommodation for the next few days! As strange and dark things begin to happen, I felt very afraid for both of them and their dog, especially as we learn more about their pasts and what has been happening in their lives.

The story is told from the viewpoints of married couple, Adam and Amelia, with sections about a mysterious character called Robin, all interspersed with unsent letters to Adam, written on their anniversary each year, from his wife. I liked the little images at the beginning of each chapter, especially the ones for the anniversary milestones – paper, cotton, leather, linen, etc.

Both Adam and Amelia seem to be hiding some serious lies and secrets from each other and, as the story unfolds, it’s clear that there’s lots they haven’t been honest about during their marriage. We’re given a few hints but I still wasn’t sure how everything was going to reach its climax!

None of the main protagonists seemed very likeable and I wasn’t really sure who to trust, if any of them! We’re introduced to other characters and I was suspicious of several of them and their motives. Looking back, there are lots of clever little hints throughout the novel about what is to come.

The book has gothic vibes and is very creepy at times – the chapel appears haunted and it’s in an isolated setting with all but one of the surrounding houses/buildings being derelict and boarded up, with no signs of life. There’s a good sense of tension and the story builds well and I felt uneasy from the start.

Overall, I really enjoyed Rock Paper Scissors – it initially took me a little while to get into the book but, once I had, it was intriguing, gripping and entertaining. This twisty thriller is well written and cleverly plotted, with several red herrings and elements of misdirection. I had various theories but wasn’t sure how it was all going to be resolved and I found the ending fascinating and I didn’t see all that coming!

I’ve already read I Know Who You Are and His & Hers so I must get round to the author’s debut, Sometimes I Lie, which also sounds an intriguing novel!

Buy the book

Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney can be purchased from Amazon on Kindle and in paperback, and as an eBook from Kobo and iBooks. See also Ethical Book Search.

About the author

Alice Feeney is a writer and journalist. She spent 15 years at the BBC, where she worked as a reporter, news editor, arts and entertainment producer and One O’clock News producer.

Her debut novel, Sometimes I Lie, was a New York Times and international bestseller. It has been translated into over 20 languages and is being made into a TV series by Ellen DeGeneres and Warner Bros., starring Sarah Michelle Gellar. His & Hers is also being adapted for screen by Jessica Chastain’s Freckle Films. Her fourth novel, Rock Paper Scissors, is also being made into a TV series for Netflix by the producer of The Crown.

Alice has lived in London and Sydney and has now settled in the Surrey countryside. She writes in her shed with her dog; a giant black Labrador who is scared of feathers.

Twitter: @alicewriterland
Facebook: @AliceFeeneyAuthor
Instagram: @alicewriterland

Blog tour

Thanks to Sian Baldwin at HQ Stories for my proof and digital copies of Rock Paper Scissors and for my place on the blogger day.

See the banner below for more stops on the #blogtour.


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