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/
Young widow Honor Gillette is frosting cup cakes in her kitchen when her four-year-old daughter Emily comes in to tell her there’s a sick man in the front garden. The “sick man” turns out to be fugitive Lee Coborn, wanted for the suspected murder of seven people the night before. He holds Honor and Emily hostage while he tears their house apart, telling Honor that the car crash that killed her husband was not an accident, and Coborn wants whatever it was in his possession that got him killed. He just doesn’t know what it is, or where to look.
The tension builds up well and keeps you reading, but when Honor starts noticing her captor’s physical attributes it becomes pretty obvious it’s going to turn into a case of Stockholm Syndrome. It’s then revealed that Coborn is an undercover FBI agent who has been framed for the murder, and he’s trying to uncover the real murderer. At this point, I thought that Coborn may as well have a sign on his forehead – “not a villain after all. OK to shag.”
However, in spite of that, this is a very suspenseful book that kicks up so many questions the reader wants to keep turning the pages to find the answers. Which of the late Eddie Gillette’s trusted colleagues are the corrupt coppers who framed Coborn? Was Eddie involved in the corruption himself, or did he die because he was about to turn in his colleagues? Is Honor’s father-in-law really motivated by Honor and Emily’s wellbeing, or does he have his own agenda? What is the real identity of the criminal mastermind behind the whole operation, The Bookkeeper?
Despite a couple of rather unlikely plot twists – for instance, the Bookkeeper’s identity, when finally revealed, comes so far out of left field as to be decidedly implausible – this is a gripping read with characters you genuinely grow to care about.