Sara-Jayne Townsend is a published crime and horror writer and likes books in which someone dies horribly. She is founder and Chair Person of the T Party Writers’ Group. http://sarajaynetownsend.weebly.com/
Spanish national Dr Maria Martinez is a brilliant plastic
surgeon, working in a prestigious London hospital. She also has Asperger’s, and
is allegedly a convicted murderer.
Maria has been
jailed for brutally killing a priest, but she has no memory of committing the
murder and in spite of evidence to the contrary, she is convinced she is
innocent. But the more time she spends with the therapist the more she begins
to doubt herself, realising that perhaps the therapist’s diagnosis that she is
a paranoid schizophrenic may be true.
The book begins
with Maria in her therapist’s office, relaying the events of the recent past,
starting from when she was first put in jail. There then follows two disparate
time lines, both from Maria’s point of view – one detailing the events of her
therapy sessions, after her time in jail, and one relaying what happened to
Maria while she was imprisoned.
The latter carries
on until it connects to the former, but the two storylines are not easily
distinguished, and make the overall story very difficult to follow. Combined
with a potentially unreliable narrator, the narrative style is disconnected and
disconcerting for the reader – which is undoubtedly the desired effect.
As Maria struggles
to get to the truth, she finds more and more obstacles to overcome. Is she really
going mad, or is she on the brink of uncovering a massive conspiracy?
This book can be
hard to follow and is possibly not everyone’s idea of a good read. Reading
about Maria’s story made me, at times, start to doubt my own sanity. But it’s
without question a cleverly-written book with a complex plot, and people who
like spy thrillers and conspiracy theories will find this one right up their