Catriona McPherson was born in South Queensferry. After finishing school, she worked in a bank for a short time, before going to university. She studied for an MA in English Language and Linguistics at Edinburgh University, and then gained a job in the local studies department at Edinburgh City Libraries. She left this post after a couple of years, and went back to university to study for a PhD in semantics. During her final year she applied for an academic job, but left to begin a writing career.
For Keiko Nishisato, leaving Tokyo is a rare adventure, but it’s living in the quiet little town of Painchton, Scotland, that shows her how far she is from home.
Keiko has never met friendlier people than the Painchton Traders. Only the Pooles, the butchers below her second floor apartment, want to keep their distance. Murray Poole attracts her right away. Mrs Poole puzzles her—is there more than recent widowhood behind all that sadness? And then there’s Malcolm. Massive and brooding, he hints at something dark behind the bustle and banter of this strange little town.
For such a settled place, a lot of young women seem to leave. But the more Keiko discovers the less she believes, until she can’t tell where her fears end and the real nightmares begin.