The Dead Lie Down - Sophie Hannah (Mystery)
Released June 2010
It has been ages since a mystery kept me guessing until very close to the end. The Dead Lie Down did just that while also keeping me riveted to the stories of not one by two sets of characters.
Ruth Bussey is falling in love with Aidan Seed, but she hides a secret that she's hesitant to reveal. The truth is, so is he, and it may be the secrets they hide that drew them together. When Aidan reveals he murdered a woman named Mary Trelease, Ruth is shocked and unsure what to do. Aidan knows he killed her, yet Ruth knows Mary Trelease is very much alive.
Ruth contacts Sergeant Charlie Zailer to voice her concerns. Charlie's got her own troubles. Her engagement to DC Simon Waterhouse is not delighting everyone in their lives and it's stressing Charlie. However, she and Simon both get drawn into Ruth's story. When they meet Mary, they know Ruth is definitely telling the truth, yet Aidan is certain he killed Mary and aspects of his story are equally convincing. The pair decide to investigate and unravel this very convoluted case.
The Dead Lie Down fascinated me from beginning to end. It's a book that requires some thought, what I call a meaty tale, and took me a couple days to work my way through. There are lots of details that you need to pay close attention to and the story does jump from Charlie to Ruth's point of view throughout. The changes in storyteller and handled seamlessly, so you shouldn't ever have to go back and figure out who is talking.
Apparently, this is not the first Charlie Zailer novel. I'm intrigued with Sophie Hannah's writing and feel the need to locate her previous books and catch up. She's definitely a British author to watch.