A Washington Post Best Book of the Year, this standalone psychological thriller from the acclaimed author of the Alex Morrow novels that exposes the dark hearts of the guilty . . . and the innocent.
William Watt's wife, daughter, and sister-in-law are dead, slaughtered in their own home in a brutal crime that scandalized Glasgow. Despite an ironclad alibi, police zero in on Watt as the primary suspect, but he maintains his innocence. Distraught and desperate to clear his name, Watt puts out a bounty for information that will lead him to the real killer.
Peter Manuel claims he knows the truth that will set Watt free and has information that only the killer would know. It won't come cheap. Manuel is an infamous career criminal, a degenerate liar who can't be trusted and will say, or do, anything to make a buck.
But Manuel has something that Watt wants, which makes him the perfect target for Manuel's consummate con. Watt agrees to sit down with Manuel and before they know it, one drink has turned into an epic, forgotten night of carousing across the city's bars and clubs that exposes the thin line between a good yarn and the truth.
The next time the unlikely pair meets is across the witness stand in court -- where Manuel is on trial for the murder of Watt's family. Manuel calls Watt to the stand to testify about the long, shady night they shared together. And the shocking testimony that Manuel coaxes out of Watt threatens to expose the dark hearts of the guilty...and the innocent.
Based on true events, The Long Drop is an explosive, unsettling novel about guilt, innocence and the power of a good story to hide the difference.
In this outstanding standalone, set in late-1950s Glasgow, from Edgar-finalist Mina (Blood, Salt, Water), William Watt stands accused of butchering his wife, daughter, and sister-in-law, but he vehemently proclaims his innocence. Only ace attorney Laurence Dowdall saves him from prison, but public sentiment is against him, forcing Watt to take on the mantle of amateur crime-solver. This is how he meets Peter Manuel, career criminal, convicted burglar, suspected rapist. The two form a strange alliance after Manuel promises to show Watt where the murder weapon is hidden but for a price. With knifelike precision, Mina flicks between the bizarre 12 hours Watt and Manuel spend together getting drunk in Glasgow bars, and Manuel's later trial, where's he's on the dock not only for the murder of the Watt family but also the slaughter of another trio, asleep in their beds. The question of guilt or innocence is irrelevant, and the gray of the in-between reigns supreme. And while Mina's usual tough female protagonists are absent, the presence of women presses as near as the crush of bodies eager to attend Manuel's trial.
A Slow, Careful Exploration of a Serial Killer
This book, like so many recent books, unfolds in two timelines. It explores in careful prose the events of a serial killer’s crimes and then the events surrounding his capture and trial. It stands out from any other book I’ve read on this subject by merit of its careful depiction of each character’s thinking and emotions.
I highly recommend this book. The revealing details at the end will leave the reader stunned.