I Dare You by Sam Carrington

Today it is my great pleasure to join the blog tour for the latest psychological thriller from Sam Carrington, I Dare You and to wish the author a very happy paperback publication day. My thanks to Sabah Khan at Avon Books for inviting me to take part. Here’s what the book is all about:

Source: Netgalley

About the Book

AN INNOCENT GAME. A SHOCKING CRIME. A COMMUNITY FULL OF SECRETS.

Mapledon, 1989

Two little girls were out playing a game of dares. Only one returned home.
The ten-year-old told police what she saw: village loner Bill ‘Creepy’ Cawley dragged her friend into his truck and disappeared.

No body was found, but her testimony sent Cawley to prison for murder. An open and shut case, the right man behind bars.
The village could sleep safe once again.

Now…

Anna thought she had left Mapledon and her nightmares behind but a distraught phone call brings her back to face her past.
30 years ago, someone lied. 30 years ago, the man convicted wasn’t the only guilty party.

Now he’s out of prison and looking for revenge. The question is, who will he start with?

Available From: Amazon | Kobo | Waterstones | Googleplay | Apple Books

My Thoughts

I always love getting my hands on a new novel from Sam Carrington. I know that I’m assured of great story, great characters and a whole lot of mystery and tension. I Dare You, the author’s latest psychological thriller, did not disappoint.

Set across two time periods, this is the story of two women, Anna and Lizzie, who are both drawn back to the town of Mapledon for very different reasons. For one of them is it a town they ran away from, only returning after being pulled back by family. For the other they are drawn there for reasons only they can understand and which the author takes great pains to hide from the reader, right until the perfect time for that oh so crucial reveal. No matter what their reasons though, the whole story circles around the disappearance of a young girl, Jonie, some thirty years earlier.

This story has a strange kind of atmosphere attached to it. It is clear from the beginning that there is far more to the story than meets the eye, more to to Anna’s reluctance to return than just a difficult relationship with her mother or a fear of the small-town mentality that pervades both Mapledon and the story. This book has a kind of claustrophobic feel to it, despite swathes of it taking place out in the actual community. Everything from the fact that the residents all know each other, and each other’s business, the way in which one act sends shockwaves throughout the whole tight-knit community, feels authentic, as are the problems inherent in that kind of situation. The closed ranks, the prejudice, the suspicion … Even the setting, the sense of place, feels very real and puts you in the heart of everything.

Half of the chapters in this book take us back to that ill fated summer and counting back from the day everything changed to the months before in which the seeds of doubt are planted and what comes to pass begins it slow and inevitable progression. Those chapters in the past are told from a number of points of view, including Anna, but do start to help readers build a picture of what really happened leading to Jonie’s disappearance.

Present day chapters are full of tension and doubt, making you suspicious of the motives of practically every character you meet, and you can feel how tragedy has shaped the future of the town. There are some strong clues throughout the book, ones which will probably enable the eagle eyed to spot some of the more obvious connections between past and present, but prepare to still be shocked by the closing revelations. That is one of the author’s real skills – taking what you think you know, and turning it on its head.

Authentically creepy, full of mystery, misdirection and suspense, fans of the author’s and of psychological thrillers are going to love it.

About the Author

Sam Carrington lives in Devon with her husband, two border terriers and a cat. She has three adult children and a new grandson! She worked for the NHS for fifteen years, during which time she qualified as a nurse. Following the completion of a psychology degree she went to work for the prison service as an Offending Behaviour Programme Facilitator. Her experiences within this field inspired her writing. She left the service to spend time with her family and to follow her dream of being a novelist. SAVING SOPHIE, her debut psychological thriller, published in September 2016. It became a Kindle eBook bestseller, with the paperback hitting The Bookseller Heatseeker chart at #8. Sam was named an Amazon Rising Star of 2016. Her second psychological thriller, BAD SISTER, published in 2017 followed by ONE LITTLE LIE in July 2018. THE MISSING WIFE publishes in June 2019 with her fifth due on 12th December.

Author Links: Twitter | Website

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