Genre – Thriller
Publication Date – 21st July 2020 (Paperback)
A gruesome discovery unravels a dark trail of murder and madness.
A six-year-old girl sneaks out of bed to capture a mermaid but instead discovers a dead body. Terrified and unable to make sense of what she sees, she locks the vision deep inside her mind.
Ten years later, Lily is introduced to the charismatic Flo and they become best friends. But Lily is guilt-ridden – she is hiding a terrible secret which has the power to destroy both their lives.
When Flo’s father is accused of killing a schoolgirl, the horrors of Lily’s past come bubbling to the surface. Lily knows that, whatever the consequences, she has to make things right. She must go back to the events of her childhood and face what happened at the boat house all those years ago.
Can Lily and Flo discover what is hiding in the murky waters of the lake before the killer strikes again?
I honestly jumped at the chance to be on the Blog Tour for this book. I love Thrillers and this sounded just my cup of tea, plus its a debut novel and I’m always excited to read an Author’s first book. I think this book may have one of the most interesting opening sentences I’ve ever read:
“Death smells of macaroons.”
The entire opening scene drew me straight into the book and I was immediately interested. The story proved to be very complex, with an ending I didn’t expect, which is a sign of a good Thriller to me. I had a bit of difficulty following what was going on at times as it flitted between different character’s points of views and also alternated between days and times which confused me sometimes. This wasn’t really a big deal, once I’d skimmed back a few pages and re-read certain parts it all became clearer to me. To be honest my head had been a bit fuzzy over the last few days so it could be entirely down to me.
That being said, the story was cleverly written, with twists and turns in all the right places. I enjoyed the alternating points of view as I could see the inner thoughts of each character which was especially fascinating with Grace and Lily’s chapters as their memories of the past are very different. In fact, Lily barely remembers anything from the past, all she knows is that something happened that caused her to lose the will to speak; she has vague flashbacks at times but no real clarity, and Grace is more than willing to plant memories in Lily’s head.
I actually enjoyed Grace’s chapters the most as she was incredibly warped, twisted and complicated. I found myself wondering how she could be such a despicable person and as the plot pressed on things started to become clear. Although she still could have chosen to be a better person I could see how and why she’d been driven to become the person she is, and in the end I did feel pity for her.
Overall this was a really interesting book with an intricate and complicated plot. Although I had the small issue of a fuzzy brain and needed to backtrack, I really did enjoy the story and I wanted to finish it quickly and discover what had happened in Lily’s childhood that caused her to retreat into herself and lose her voice. This was a brilliant debut novel and I’ll be looking out for Charlie Tyler’s next book.
Charlie has been writing for years but it was taking a creative writing course in 2018 which gave her the gentle kick she needed to finish her debut novel.
Charlie is very much a morning person and likes nothing more than committing a fictional murder before her first coffee of the day. She studied Theology at Worcester College, Oxford and now lives in a Leicestershire village with her husband, three teenagers and golden retriever.