Today it’s my pleasure to join the blog tour for One More Lie, the brand new thriller from Amy Lloyd which is released today. Happy publication day Amy. My thanks to Rachel Kennedy for inviting me to join the tour and to the publisher for the advance copy for review. Here is what is’t all about:
The Bookish Bits
How do you live with yourself as an adult when you were convicted of murder as a child?
And when you can’t remember the crime…
HOW DO YOU KNOW YOU’RE GUILTY?
Charlotte wants a fresh start. She wants to forget her past, forget her crime – and, most of all, forget that one terrible moment.
It’s the reason she’s been given a new name, a new life. The reason she spent years in prison.
But even on the outside, with an ankle monitor and court-mandated therapy, she can’t escape the devastating memory of the night that turned her and her only friend into national hate figures.
But now her friend has found her.
And despite the lies she tells to survive, she soon finds herself being dragged deeper and deeper into a past she cannot confront.
Even if it’s going to cost Charlotte her life…
This is one of those books which should probably repulse and enrage the reader. It is after all a very familiar scenario, the kind which has been plunged into the spotlight after the very heavily reported upon release of the notorious child killers of James Bulger, which generated such a strong reaction amongst the general public. The same is very much the case here when Charlotte, as she is now known, is released from detention and is about to start her new life. The story introduces us to a young women who is trying to learn how to be someone completely different when she barely had time to learn who she was before. Convicted at ten years of age, Charlotte cannot remember what happened that fateful day, and only knows that the aftermath changed her life forever.
Now we know what Charlotte was convicted of, but we are never really sure if she was actually guilty and the author keeps up this suspense and questioning throughout the whole book. Blending Charlotte’s present with snatched memories from her past, Amy Lloyd takes us from her first tentative journey to her new job at a supermarket, to the rather dramatic and enlightening ending in which the truth is finally revealed to everyone, Charlotte included.
This is a very skilfully constructed novel which played with my emotions as a reader, making me want to learn more about Charlotte’s past and how a once loving and loved child becomes a killer. It’s hard to believe you could feel sympathy for her and yet there are elements of her history which gave me pause for thought. The author has managed to make her very believable, if not necessarily likeable, and completely drew me into her life. Childlike in outlook as though her time in detention prevented her from properly maturing – there is a kind of naivety and almost innocence about Charlotte in spite of her past – and yet there is also an underlying edge to her which makes you think she is perhaps far more calculating than she appears. Yet compare this with her fellow killer, Sean, and you have chalk and cheese. You will feel almost no sympathy when you meet the hard, mercenary man that Sean has become.
Rather than being a book which merely condemns the protagonist, alienating readers from the start, what we are actually faced with is a very clever and canny character study. Examining themes of love, loss, obsession and friendship, the book had me hooked from the beginning. The more I read, the more I wanted to understand what and why. What did the two children do and why did they do it? The book doesn’t necessarily try to answer the nature verses nurture debate, or to try and justify what happened, but it does make clear that there is far more to the story than this simply being an example of latent psychopathy. Life is never quite that simple. And then that ending … A book that gave me that overwhelming need for ‘just one more page’. A sleep stealer for sure. Most definitely recommended.
About the Author
Amy Lloyd studied English and Creative Writing at Cardiff Metropolitan University. In 2016 she won the Daily Mail Bestseller Competition for her debut novel The Innocent Wife which, when it was published, became a Sunday Times top ten bestseller. Amy lives in Cardiff with her partner, who is also a published novelist.
Author Links: Twitter
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