Amnesia by Michael Ridpath

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Amnesia by Michael Ridpath

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Category: Crime
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Megan Kenny
Reviewed by Megan Kenny
Summary: Amnesia contains all the elements you'd expect from a tense thriller including a cat and mouse chase, secrets, lies and evidence of a truth best left buried. But best for whom? And how can you solve a mystery and stop your own murder when you can't remember your name? An easy read for those of you who like their thrillers with a twist in the tale.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 368 Date: May 2017
Publisher: Corvus
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1782397564

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Alastair is in trouble. He's had a nasty knock on the head and now he can't remember anything about his life. In an attempt to recover his memories, he is sent to convalesce in a remote cottage in the Scottish Highlands in the company of his old friend's niece, Clemence. During their stay, Clemence uncovers a strange book which seems to tell the story of her grandmother's murder years before. Now Alastair and Clemence must uncover the truth about who murdered Sophie as outside the snow grows ever nearer, as does a creeping malevolent ghost from Alastair's past who wants to make sure the past stays buried, even if that means burying Alastair along with it.

Amnesia is a tense thriller which expertly weaves the past and present together to create a narrative which will keep you hooked from one chapter to the next. The mystery surrounding Alastair's involvement in a sordid history of violence and betrayal is enhanced by his inability to recall anything about his former life. The beauty of Amnesia is that it is essentially a book within a book and through Alastair and Clemence we uncover the truth about a formative summer spent in Europe and the lasting impact this had, not only on Alastair but also his group of friends who all share a bloody secret which binds them together through the years.

Ridpath is an established author and it shows here, Amnesia is a tight, well-constructed thriller which races along at a steady pace. The chapters focused on Alastair's history, as told in the mysterious volume found by Clemence, add an extra dimension to the story and allow the reader to develop their view, not only of Alastair but also the key players involved in his past; handsome Stephen, elegant Sophie, driven Nathan, rich and generous Alden and his long-suffering wife Madeline. The reader is drawn into heady summer days of excess and love unrequited before being transported back to the freezing present in the wilds of Scotland and to a man desperate to reconcile the version of himself in print with the reality facing him in the mirror.

For those interested in reading more fiction with an amnesiac protagonist, you could try The Exodus Quest by Will Adams. We can also recommend The Two Deaths of Daniel Hayes by Marcus Sakey. You might also enjoy The Interpretations by David Shaw Mackanzie.

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Buy Amnesia by Michael Ridpath at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Amnesia by Michael Ridpath at


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