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Sunday, 17 February 2019

‘A Double Life’ by Flynn Berry

Published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson,
31 July 2018.
ISBN: 978-147460703-2 (HB)

For years Claire has been obsessed with uncovering the mystery at the heart of her life; did her father try to kill her mother but murdered the nanny instead?

Inspired by the case of the disappearance of Lord Lucan in 1974, Flynn Berry explores what it is like for the family left behind when someone disappears, when the primary murder suspect is your father, and how upper class society sticks together to protect one of their own.

Did her father murder the nanny or was it an intruder as was suggested? Why did her father disappear? Is he still alive? These are some of the questions Clare needs answered so that she can have closure.

Clare was eight when the nanny was killed, and she saw the body. Not only did she have to deal with the trauma of someone she loved being bludgeoned to death, but she then had a whole change of life including a move to Scotland and a new identity. Her father was a wealthy, expensively educated, privileged man with a tight group of friends who Clare thinks hold the key to discovering exactly what happened. Clare has moved back to London and, even though she knows it could be dangerous, she finds a way of getting close to her father’s inner circle so that she can start probing for information.

Clare’s story is told in the first person with chapters retelling her parent’s backstory in the third person. Written in the first person, the conversational style of narration draws the reader in. The gentle pacing as you are drip-fed the details make the book a good choice for those who like lighter psychological suspense and the conclusion was unexpected and satisfying. 
Reviewer: Christine Hammercott

Flynn Berry is a graduate of the Michener Center and has been awarded a Yaddo residency. She graduated from Brown University. Under the Harrow was her first novel.

Christine Hammacott lives near Southampton and runs her own design consultancy. She started her career working in publishing as a book designer and now creates covers for indie-authors. She writes page-turning fiction that deals with the psychological effects of crime. Her debut novel The Taste of Ash was published in 2015.

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