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311 pages, Paperback
First published February 3, 2015
I’d taken enormous risks in the past two weeks, and I was lucky to have gotten away with them. But now I was done. It was over. I would live a quiet life and make sure that no one could hurt me again. I would continue to survive, knowing, as I’d known that night in the meadow, the stars pouring their light down on me, that I was special, that I was born with a different kind of morality. The morality of an animal—of a crow or a fox or an owl—and not of a normal human being.Peter Swanson, author of The Girl with a Clock for a Heart, has a twisted mind, not that there’s anything wrong with that. He seems to think in curves, bends, dips and sudden, hairpin turns. The feeling is a bit akin to being here, or maybe here. The sudden changes in direction may generate a bit of screaming, but it’s all good.
I like the idea of sudden change. That you or me or anyone could go out to a bar one evening, and the random stranger who sits down beside you changes your life forever. It’s actually something that Hitchcock liked a lot himself. Most of his protagonists are accidental ones, just ordinary people who wind up in extraordinary circumstances.In his version, Ted Severson a wealthy corporate raider (formerly a dot.com millionaire sort), at a Heathrow bar pre-flight, is approached by Lily, a lovely young thing. They strike up a conversation, and, as strangers might be better able to manage than people who actually know each other, (a theory titled The Rules of Airport Bars) they agree to tell each other the whole truth, and continue their truth-telling all the way back to Boston. The truth is gonna hurt…someone. Seems that Ted spotted his wife en flagrante with the contractor who was working with her on Ted’s Maine McMansion. Not good.
”How long ago was this?” asked my fellow traveler after I’d told her the story.And the game is afoot.
“Just over a week.”
She blinked her eyes, and bit at her lower lip. Her eyelids were pale as tissue paper.
“So what are you going to do about it?” she asked.
It was the question I’d been asking myself all week. “What I really want to do is kill her.” I smiled with my gin numbed mouth and attempted a little wink just to give her an opportunity to not believe me, but her face stayed serious. She lifted her reddish eyebrows.”
“I think you should.” She said.
Murder here.....Murder there.....Murder everywhere in this page-turning mystery-thriller! I was surprised more than once, thoroughly entertained from beginning to end, and even found myself rooting for the devious and dangerous little psycho killer.....well, most of the time.
“I knew that I was in the danger of being too drunk and saying too much.”
“She lied so easily. I don’t know how she learned to be like that. The different way she acted in front of different people. I realized this is what she is, a shallow, fake liar. Maybe even a sociopath. I don’t know how I didn’t see this before. ”
“The trick was to unfocus his eyes, to take in everything in his visual range all at once. And by doing that, he could catch flickers of movements, the disturbances in the water.”
“I imagine she acted the way she thought you wanted to see her.”
“I amazed by her acting skills. You have been used.”
“I tried to sleep, falling into a doze as thin as tissue paper.”