Century 4th April 2019 (Hardback)
Charlotte wants to start fresh. She wants to forget her past, forget the years of her childhood spent in prison, and most of all forget Sean. But even with a new identity, old habits die hard.
Despite the ankle monitor she must wear as part of her parole agreement and frequent visits to her therapist, Charlotte’s demons begin to catch up with her and drag her back down a dark path. And the further down that path she goes, the closer she gets to the crime that put her in prison all those years ago.
And then, one day, when her old ‘partner in crime’ tracks her down, Charlotte is forced to face the one devastating memory she’d much rather forget…
An anticipated read for me having been a big fan of Amy Lloyd’s debut novel The Innocent Wife, and I’m pleased to say this did not disappoint. This is an absolute must read for fans of an Innocent Wife as once again Amy Lloyd has written a sensitive work of fiction from a different perspective – previously the wife of a death row prisoner, this time, a child criminal, released on a tag as an adult.
Sean and Charlotte committed a heinous crime as children, released from prison with new identities they try to rebuild their lives, separately- not knowing the others identity or location.
This is Charlotte’s story, told in a ‘then and now’ format with the reader not knowing the full details of the crime committed until the book’s final pages. We meet Sean in the ‘then’ sections as a child and friend of Charlotte and are introduced to him as the story progresses in the ‘now’ sections and hear his own struggles post incarceration from his perspective. The story is told in the first person throughout, which serves to bring the voices of the main characters to life.
I was particularly impressed with the way the author created a sympathetic character in Charlotte, despite her crime. The author recognises and details the frequent troubling backgrounds of children involved in criminal activity and this in my opinion gives the book depth.
The story had me gripped and following a couple of months of something of a reading slump, this was the quickest I had read anything in what felt like ages. The plot kept me guessing and the ending wasn’t as I expected but left me feeling impressed with the author’s willingness not to settle for a happy ending. Intrigued? well you’ll need to grab yourself a copy of this book which was published last week.
Definitely a book I would recommend but be warned, the subject matter is difficult and may not be for everyone.
Special thanks to Rachel Kennedy at Century Books who made a huge effort to get me an early copy of this book – thank you, it was so appreciated!
About the Author
Amy Lloyd’s journey to becoming a bestselling author started when she left secondary school with only a handful of GCSEs before going to university as a mature student to study English and Creative Writing at Cardiff Metropolitan University. When she was unable to afford fees for a masters, Amy entered and won the Daily Mail First Novel Competition, beating out over 7000 entries.
Her debut novel The Innocent Wife debuted as a Sunday Times bestseller, was a Richard & Judy Book Club pick, sold rights in over 18 countries and won the prestigious Foreign Thriller of the Year at LE Prix du Thriller in France, 2018. Her writing combines her fascination with true crime and her passion for fiction. One More Lie is her second novel. She lives in Cardiff with her partner and two cats.