As a founder member of Mystery Women in 1997, promoting Crime Fiction has always been my passion.
Following the closure of Mystery Women, a new group was formed on 30th January 2012 promoting crime fiction.
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Sphere, 21 June 2018. ISBN: 978-0-7515-7419-7 (TPB)
You go out on the modern equivalent of a blind date, to meet someone
you think you've formed a connection with, through an exchange of online
messages. You wake up next morning, not only bruised, battered and with no
memory of anything beyond leaving the house, but also unable to recognise
anyone's face, including your own. Your car is damaged, there's a trail of
blood, and your best friend is missing. What do you do?
Most people, I can't help
thinking, would go straight from A & E to the police, and keep banging the
table until something was done. But this is fiction, and Ali Taylor has a
history which makes her unwilling to trust them; so, her approach is to set
about trying to unpick the mystery herself.
Her efforts aren't helped by
the condition called prosopagnosia, or face blindness. As part of the
battering, Ali has suffered a head injury which has not only wiped out her memory
of the evening in question but also damaged the part of her brain which
recognizes the people she knows. All she does know is that someone is out to
get her. Incident follows incident: notes, graffiti, pictures on her phone, all
with strong hints that she has done something unforgivable.
Louise Jensen's great talent
is ramping up the tension. The Date is a page-turner in the best sense;
skeletons are hinted at, and you won't want to stop reading till they tumble
out of the cupboard. There's plainly something significant about Ali's past,
though it's far from clear how, or even if, it connects to her present troubles
until well into the narrative. But that's the trick of it; I wanted to know, so
I kept reading when I should have been doing other things.
The main characters,
including Ali herself, are thirty-somethings who are all damaged by something
in their lives: divorce, failed relationships, business issues, the past. Only
Iris, sixty-plus and frail, is from a different mould.
It's all set against a well-drawn
background of a small coastal town, in a variety of houses which are all
distinct from each other. There's also the nightclub where the date takes
place; it's the seediest kind, with sticky carpets, a smelly yard out back, and
an owner with dodgy CCTV and an eye to the main chance.
If internet dating is your
thing, pick up this book at your peril; you may never swipe right again. On the
other hand, you'll read a tense, pacy psychological thriller with an unusual
theme. The choice is yours.
Reviewer: Lynne Patrick
Jensen is a Global No.1 Bestselling author of psychological
thrillers The Sister, The Gift & The Surrogate. To date Louise has sold
approaching a million books and her novels have been sold for translation to
nineteen territories, as well as being featured on the USA Today and Wall
Street Journal Bestseller’s List. Louise was nominated for the Goodreads Debut
Author of 2016 Award. Louise lives with her husband, children, madcap dog and a
rather naughty cat in Northamptonshire. She loves to hear from readers and
writers and can be found at www.louisejensen.co.uk, where she regularly blogs
flash fiction and writing tips.
Lynne Patrick has been a writer ever since she could pick up a pen,
and has enjoyed success with short stories, reviews and feature journalism, but
never, alas, with a novel. She crossed to the dark side to become a publisher
for a few years, and is proud to have launched several careers which are now
burgeoning. She lives on the edge of rural Derbyshire in a house groaning with
books, about half of them crime fiction.