Good Reading : August 2015
GOODREADINGMAGAZINE.COM.AU GOOD READING AUGUST 2015 44 CRIME / THRILLER WOM word of mouth RATINGS ★ ★ ★★ ★★ ★★★ ★★★ ★★★★ ★★★★ ★★★★★ RG The Bones of You Debbie Howells The Bones of You is a fresh and compulsively readable story that views the horr ific murder of a young woman in a sleepy English village from two contrasting perspectives. When 18-year-old Rosie disappears then is found dead, Kate, a garden designer who has a daughter the same age and horses that Rosie loved, is horrified by the brutality of the crime and its closeness to home. In an attempt to deal with her feelings of grief and doubt, she befriends Rosie’s brittle mother, Jo, and is sucked into her strangely vacuous ‘perfect’ life. But cracks begin to appear in this perfect life, pulling Kate out of her depth. The second perspective is that of Rosie herself, a ghost, as she reflects on her life in a loveless home with a glamorous but abusive father and beautiful but distant mother. Her memories paint a very different picture to that created by her parents and lead to the revelation of a deeply-buried truth. The Bones of You is surprising in many ways, it has a freshness that is strong enough to outweigh a few minor credibility issues, the characters are well developed and the narrative compelling. The way the dual, competing perspectives evolve is particularly impressive and the exploration of domestic abuse is both extremely relevant and confronting. ★★★★ Macmillan $29.99 Reviewed by Tessa Chudy You Are Dead Peter James As embarrassing as it is for a crime fan to admit, I have not previously read any of the titles by this bestselling British writer, but this may have to change. You Are Dead, the eleventh title in the series featuring the Brighton-based Detective Superintendent Roy Grace, hooked me in from the opening pages and kept me reading till the wee hours. Like many of his contemporary crime fiction protagonists, Roy Grace’s personal life is as complicated as it gets, but after remaining single for ten years following the mysterious disappearance of his wife, Sandy, he is about to move into a country cottage with his new wife, Cleo, and their baby son. However, his plans for domestic bliss are violently disrupted with the puzzling disappearance of a young woman and the unearthing of the body of another young woman, buried 30 years earlier. Although seemingly unrelated, the more evidence Grace and his team uncover, the more these two crimes appear linked, and when events take an even more sinister turn it appears that a long dor mant killer has returned to their murderous ways. Peter James is a master of tension and suspense, and keeps just enough lightness in the storyline to balance the rather gruesome nature of the cr imes. You Are Dead can be read as a stand-alone but I’m planning to scour second-hand bookstores to track down the rest of the ser ies. ★★★★ Macmillan $29.99 Reviewed by Maryanne Vagg About Peter James Arriving in England in 1939 after studying design in Vienna, Peter James’s mother became the Glovemaker to Her Majesty the Queen.