The Girl Before Book Summary, Analysis, Characters, J.P. Delaney


What is the summary of the book The Girl Before written by J.P. Delaney? Information about the summary, characters and analysis of The Girl Before.

The Girl Before

The Girl Before

“The Girl Before” is a psychological thriller novel written by J.P. Delaney. The book explores the themes of obsession, control, and identity. It tells the story of two women, Emma and Jane, who both become tenants in a unique and minimalist house called One Folgate Street. However, they soon discover that the house comes with a set of strict rules and an enigmatic architect named Edward Monkford.

The novel alternates between Emma and Jane’s perspectives, revealing their experiences and the dark secrets hidden within the walls of the house. As they uncover the truth about the previous tenant, the mysterious “Girl Before,” they become entangled in a dangerous web of deception and manipulation.

“The Girl Before” delves into the complex dynamics between the characters and their relationships with the house, exploring themes of control, trauma, and the lengths people will go to in pursuit of perfection and security. The book keeps readers on the edge of their seats with its twists and turns, as Emma and Jane’s lives become increasingly intertwined and their sense of reality is tested.


With its gripping narrative and exploration of psychological themes, “The Girl Before” offers a thrilling reading experience for fans of suspenseful and thought-provoking novels.

Book Summary

“The Girl Before” by J.P. Delaney is a gripping psychological thriller that follows the lives of two women, Emma Matthews and Jane Cavendish, who become tenants in a unique and minimalist house known as One Folgate Street. The story unfolds through alternating chapters, revealing the twisted secrets and dark past of both the house and its enigmatic architect, Edward Monkford.

Emma, recovering from a traumatic break-in at her previous home, is drawn to the allure of One Folgate Street. The house is a stunning architectural masterpiece, designed to create a sense of simplicity and order. Its rental application process is strict, requiring potential tenants to undergo an extensive screening process and adhere to a set of peculiar rules.

As Emma settles into her new life at One Folgate Street, she becomes captivated by the charismatic but controlling Edward Monkford. Edward, with his rigid lifestyle and obsession with perfection, pushes Emma to follow his strict guidelines. He insists on recording every aspect of her life through a complex home automation system, including monitoring her sleep patterns and dietary habits.

Meanwhile, in a parallel narrative, Jane Cavendish is introduced. Jane, grieving the loss of her stillborn child and struggling to rebuild her life, comes across the opportunity to live at One Folgate Street. Despite reservations about the house’s history, she is enticed by the chance to start fresh in such an extraordinary space.

As Jane settles into the house, she discovers that Emma had lived there before her. Intrigued by the mysterious circumstances surrounding Emma’s departure, Jane starts uncovering unsettling details about her predecessor’s experiences in the house. She realizes that Emma’s life at One Folgate Street took a dark and dangerous turn.

Emma’s story is revealed through flashbacks, gradually exposing the truth behind her relationship with Edward and the events that led to her departure. It becomes apparent that Edward’s need for control borders on obsession, and his actions become increasingly manipulative and sinister.


Jane becomes determined to uncover the truth about Emma and the house, as she suspects that she too is being watched and manipulated. She starts investigating the history of One Folgate Street, delving into its previous tenants and the disturbing events that took place within its walls.

As Jane gets closer to the truth, she uncovers a series of shocking revelations about Edward’s past and the dark secrets hidden within the house. The lines between reality and perception blur, and Jane finds herself caught in a dangerous game of cat and mouse with the elusive architect.

In a heart-stopping climax, Jane confronts Edward, unearthing the full extent of his manipulations and the twisted truth behind the Girl Before. The house’s secrets are exposed, leading to a thrilling and unexpected conclusion that challenges everything Jane thought she knew.

“The Girl Before” is a gripping and chilling tale of obsession, control, and the haunting power of the past. With its intricate plot, well-drawn characters, and psychological suspense, the novel keeps readers on the edge of their seats until the final page.


“The Girl Before” features several key characters whose lives are intertwined in the gripping narrative. Here are the main characters in the book:

  • Emma Matthews: Emma is one of the protagonists and the initial tenant of One Folgate Street. She is recovering from a traumatic event in her previous home and seeks a fresh start. Emma becomes captivated by the allure of the house and the enigmatic architect, Edward Monkford. Her experiences at One Folgate Street form a significant part of the story, gradually unveiling the dark secrets hidden within the house.
  • Jane Cavendish: Jane is the second protagonist and later tenant of One Folgate Street. She is grieving the loss of her stillborn child and looking for a new beginning. Jane becomes increasingly curious about the previous tenant, Emma, and starts uncovering the mysteries surrounding the house. As she delves deeper into the past, Jane discovers disturbing truths and becomes entangled in a dangerous web of deception.
  • Edward Monkford: Edward is the architect and owner of One Folgate Street. He is portrayed as charismatic, controlling, and obsessed with perfection. Edward imposes strict rules and guidelines on his tenants, using advanced technology to monitor their lives. His character raises questions about the extent of his influence and manipulation, and his dark secrets slowly come to light throughout the story.
  • Simon: Simon is Emma’s ex-boyfriend, who plays a significant role in her past and her present. His presence and actions have a profound impact on Emma’s life and decisions.
  • Sadie: Sadie is Jane’s supportive and loyal best friend. She provides emotional support and advice to Jane as she unravels the mysteries surrounding One Folgate Street. Sadie’s character brings a sense of friendship and grounding amidst the tension and uncertainty.

These characters, with their distinct personalities and histories, contribute to the complex and suspenseful atmosphere of “The Girl Before.” Their relationships, interactions, and individual journeys form the backbone of the gripping psychological thriller.

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