In this “powerful and frightening” British thriller, two estranged sisters confront a crime that exposes the nightmares that lurk at the edges of domesticity (Irish Independent).
On a picture-perfect morning in Bath, England, a teenage girl’s body is found on the towpath of a canal. Police detective Zoe Benedict is convinced the department head should look beyond the usual domestic motives to solve the brutal murder case. But no one wants to hear any far-fetched ideas from the department’s black sheep.
Meanwhile, Zoe’s sister, Sally, has started working as a housekeeper for a wealthy entrepreneur whose eccentricities are beginning to seem increasingly repugnant, and possibly dangerous. As Zoe digs into the case and Sally’s suspicions grow, all signs point to one conclusion: There’s something very wrong at the house on Hanging Hill.
“A chiller to the very end. Hayder deals with Britain at its grittiest.” —Peter Millar, The Times (London)
“Mo Hayder has crafted a powerful and frightening thriller that grips the reader from page one to the blood-freezing shock of the final page. Utterly compelling.” —Irish Independent
“[A] superbly plotted tale [with] an end more alarming than anything that comes before.” —New York Daily News
In this superb stand-alone from British author Hayder (Pig Island), the brutal murder of 16-year-old Lorne Wood, found dead in a park with words written on her corpse, draws together the Benedict sisters, Zo and Sally, who have been estranged for years, despite both living in the city of Bath. Career-driven Zo , a detective inspector, takes issue with her team's reliance on a forensic psychologist. Pursuing her own line of investigation, Zo discovers that Lorne's modeling aspirations may have led the girl away from the catwalk and into something much seedier. Complacent Sally, a divorced mother, must take on extra housecleaning jobs to keep up with the spending of her teenage daughter, who was acquainted with Lorne. Reluctantly, Sally agrees to work extra hours for a rich businessman she soon learns makes his fortune in hardcore pornography. Secrets, both past and present, bind the sisters yet threaten to ruin multiple lives. Hayder uses her trademark violence to perfect sinister effect.