Have you ever read a blurb of a book that you just know you are going to blinkin’ well love? Well this was one of those books for me. I was at a point in my life where I had stopped accepting blog tour invites for personal reasons, but as soon as Jenny at Michael Joseph sent through the email invitation, I automatically jumped onto the back of the tour bus (so to speak!) in readiness of, in the words of Marian Keyes, ‘a SUPERIOR crime book’.
‘Six friends. One killer. Who do you trust?
Seven friends went down to the woods, but one of them never came home. 30 years later, a body is discovered. DCI Sheens already knows what’s waiting for him – Aurora Jackson, found at last. They all claim to be innocent, but one of them must be lying. Because she was found somewhere only they knew about.
Now everyone’s a suspect.’
Gytha is spot on when it comes to building her main characters to match the progress of her plotting, oh, and she is also Queen of the ‘Red Herring’. So many times I thought I knew what was going on to have been led to a dead end. I loved the dual timeline, as the whole ‘past’ and ‘present’ element is always a winner with me. It keeps you on your toes and you remain involved in the story, not wanting to put it down.
The settings are incredibly atmospheric and there is always a creeping sense of anxiety there waiting to tap you on the shoulder and shout ‘BOO’. Oh, I simply loved it all. The twists. The turns. The plotting. The characters. The unknown. The anticipation of where it all is leading… I really can’t say much more than that, in fear of giving anything away. No-one appreciates a spoiler!
The voice from the grave of Aurora was refreshing. It added a child-like tenderness to the story recounting her memories of what happened that night, unfolding things gradually for us. And DCI Sheen has the pleasure of piecing all these moments together via old witness accounts that nobody has touched in years. The different elements of the tale really makes this a riveting, fingers in mouth (aka biting my nails), read.
I understand that Gytha is evolving DCI Sheen into a series!? Well, there is plenty of scope for it, and if ‘She Lies in Wait’ is anything to go by, then I am pretty damn sure that Gytha has the creativity and writing ability to really get this going. She is a lady to watch, and I have no doubt that these books are going to be my new addiction…
Oh, and quite simply, I just cannot get my head around that this is a debut.
Thank you so much to Jenny for my gifted copy in return for a fair review. It is always greatly appreciated.