When Rosemary Sherwood overhears a disturbing conversation between her husband, Harry Sherwood and an unknown caller, she has no idea that her life’s about to change forever. Fleeing to France for fear of her own safety, Harry threatens to kill their son if she ever dares to breathe a word of anything she overheard.
Torn between hiding out in France and re-connecting with her estranged son, Rosemary returns to England twelve years later believing that she and her son are now out of danger…
A web of deceit and lies has been woven over the years to cover up the antics of Harry and his friends, who are no strangers to violence and murder and who will stop at nothing to ensure they aren’t exposed.
Private Detective Daniel Appleman takes on the case, but can he track down these men before they wreak havoc on the Sherwood family?
I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.
This is a story for those who like noir crime. The ethos of the story is dark, fueled with tales of abuse, depravity and disregard for life.
Told from multi-points of view, the plot is complex, it requires concentration, especially in the early chapters, as you get to know the cast of characters and their motivations. There is an element of family drama in this story, Rosemary overhears her husband’s telephone conversation, what she hears is life-changing, and puts her and her son in imminent danger.
Told in different time scales, you begin to get the complete picture of what Harry and his consorts do, and it’s not good.
The investigation part of the story, brings Daniel Appleman into the plot, as he embarks on, at times, a desperate journey to uncover the web of dark secrets and lies and keep Rosemary and her son safe. The investigation is intense and interesting, as different lines of enquiry and various leads and suspects are pursued.
There are lighter scenes to counter the darkness, and the comparison of the detective’s family life and Rosemary’s is marked.
The suspense building and underlying menace increases as the story progresses, and leads to a realistic and satisfying conclusion.
Overall this a good crime story. It will appeal, to those that like their thrillers full of dark deeds and depraved antagonists.
Michael Pakenham is part of a well-known Irish literary family. Generations of his family lived at Langford Lodge on Loch Neagh outside Belfast. His father was killed in the Second World War and the estate was sold. His mother then took Michael and his sister to Tucson Arizona until the end of the war. On returning to England, his mother bought a farm in Hampshire and Michael has lived in the county ever since. Having served in the Grenadier Guards – the fourth generation to do so – Michael returned to take over his mother’s farming enterprises until he sold his farming interests in 1990 and started his writing career. This will be his eighth book and the second in the Daniel Appleman series. He lives outside Winchester with his wife. He has three children and a string of grandchildren.
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