And So It Begins by Rachel Abbott

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And So It Begins by Rachel Abbott

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Category: Crime
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: A twisty psychological thriller which will keep you guessing right up to the end. A good read.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 416 Date: November 2018
Publisher: Wildfire
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1472254894

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We know there's something very strange going on as soon as we join the story: we begin by hearing how it's going to end and that someone must die. But that's just a hint: for the time being we're with two police persons. Stephanie's the sergeant and she has Jason, the probationer with her in the squad car, but Stephanie doesn't like where they're heading. The house is stunning, but the last time she was here it was because there was a dead body at the bottom of the stairs to the pool. This time there's been a 999 call with a woman screaming for help: the omens are not good and when they enter the house they find two tangled, blood-soaked bodies in the bed. They both look dead, but one of them moves - it's Evie Clark and she confesses to killing her partner.

Although Evie's not saying a great deal about it you suspect that there's a lot more behind her story. People who know her are suspicious that her partner, Mark North, has been abusive. There have been a few too many injuries requiring hospital treatment, explained by stories which might be true, but - somehow - don't ring so. They all seem to happen just as Mark is going away on an assignment and Evie has recently seemed frightened of him when he returns, although she's quick to point out that he's an excellent father to their baby daughter, Lulu. The situation is exacerbated by Cleo North, Mark's sister. She freely admits to not liking, or trusting Evie, but then she didn't like Mia, Mark's dead wife, either. The only people she does like is a friend, her brother - and his daughter, with whom she's besotted.

You're sympathetic towards Evie. We all listened to The Archers, didn't we? We know what can happen in marriages and relationships which look perfect to outsiders, but which are abusive. And yet, and yet... there's a nagging voice which tells you that all is not quite as it seems, or even as you feel it ought to seem. We've a lawyer wanting to make a name for herself by defending the case - and even the police are torn. Stephanie is seconded to CID and sympathises with Evie. Her boss is convinced that Evie is guilty of murder.

The plot is excellent: it's a book to read to enjoy and then to read again later to see how it was all done. I was surprised by just how quickly I got through what's quite a big book. The chapters are not very short, but I kept succumbing to the temptation to read 'just one more' before I did what I ought to be going. I was impressed and I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

If this book appeals then you might also enjoy The Darkness Around Her by Neil White.'

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