'The pages fly... Haynes is an expert at ratcheting up tension, so when someone poisons one of Sarah’s dogs, you know something bad is about to happen to Sarah herself. Until the very end, though, you aren’t sure who exactly it is that wishes her ill.'—The New York Times Book Review
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From the award-winning and bestselling author of Into the Darkest Corner comes a gripping new psychological thriller.
Sarah Carpenter lives with her two dogs in a farmhouse, high on the North Yorkshire moors. Alone for the first time since her husband died and her children left home, she isn’t exactly lonely but welcomes the arrival of an old friend, Aiden Beck, who needs a place to stay.
Aiden clearly has secrets, but then so does Sarah, and that’s no reason not to respond to his warmth and charm. But something doesn’t feel quite right. As the weather closes in, and snowfall blocks the roads, events take a dramatic turn and suddenly Sarah finds herself in terrible danger, unsure of who she can trust.
Elizabeth Haynes is also the author of Revenge of the Tide (Myriad, 2012), Human Remains (Myriad, 2013) and The Murder of Harriet Monckton (Myriad, 2018).
Publishers Weekly1 May 2018
For all appearances, Sarah Carpenter, the heroine of this gripping psychological thriller from British author Haynes, is keeping up with the responsibilities of tending the remote North Yorkshire farmhouse and grounds she once shared with husband Jim and their two children. Truth be told, with Jim dead and their kids grown, she and her two Labradors are barely scraping by. So when Aiden Beck, an old family friend and Sarah’s still-single former lover, suddenly turns up after 20 years and offers to rent the cottage on her property, relief—both financial and sexual—is in sight. Before long, though, Sarah discovers there’s more mystery to Aiden than is comforting, and a severe late winter snowstorm isolates the farmhouse. The unconventional combination of viewpoints (Sarah’s third person, Aiden’s second person, plus that of a creepy anonymous observer) may put some readers’ teeth on edge, but it definitely intensifies the plot’s not-inconsiderable chill factor. Haynes remains a crime writer to watch.
Suspense Magazine19 April 2018
This fantastic book by Elizabeth Haynes cannot appear on bookshelves soon enough. Truly exciting, this is one title that’s sure to be on top of all summer ‘must-read’ lists.
We begin with Sarah Carpenter. Living on the moors of North Yorkshire, she spends her time in a farmhouse with her two dogs. Sarah has had rough times in her past, most especially the death of her husband. Now comes the time when her two children, Louis and Kitty, are packing up and leaving for the university. In other words, the farmhouse is about to become more than a little isolated. Upside for Sarah is the fact that she does have friends and support, even a very best friend by the name of Sophie who she can rely on to be there for her.
Lives certainly change on a daily basis, and although Sarah has lost her children to adulthood for a time, a new person comes into the area that may alter her own personal romantic future.
His name is Aiden Beck, and he’s no stranger. Looking for somewhere to stay for a while, Sarah offers up a room and looks forward to spending time with him. Sarah, however, seems to be the only one happy with Aiden’s appearance. Her children are wary of this man’s motives and Will Brewer, a friend, has taken it upon himself to check up on Sarah as often as he can. Even her relationship with Sophie has become a bit distant since Aiden’s arrival.
Drama enters quickly: Sophie disappears, winter weather is closing in, and even Kitty goes missing. Sarah finds herself a bit frightened as the odd and dangerous things seem to pile up as quickly as the snow outside. And when Mother Nature blocks the road and takes away any chance of Sarah leaving the farmhouse, Aiden’s motives come to light.
A truly great read, Haynes has hit it out of the park once again!
Reviewed by Mary Lignor, Professional Librarian and Co-Owner of The Write Companion for Suspense Magazine