In the last few months the universe has been playing with my head.
It all started with
Still Waters by Nigel McCrery. An odd book no doubt about it, but rather engaging, some outlandish plot elements alongside some sobering all too realistic elements.
Still Waters by Camilla Noli. Not my cup of tea at all.
but today arrived:
Still Waters by Judith Cutler. I'll be reviewing that as soon as I can.
Now I can't decide if this is just "find a good title and flog it to death" syndrome; the world's greatest coincidence or just the favourite phrase is some part of the universe, but it is interesting that so many books - same title yet publishers often change the title of books to "avoid confusion in the reader's minds" (I'm thinking of Diamond Dove in particular which was changed to avoid confusion with the Lovesey "Diamond" books).
So you have to wonder - a little like and it can't be done! Totally identical and let's flog it to death?
I've looked into the eyes of women who have banged nine-inch nails into the skulls of their victims with hammers ... we evaluate them, trying to determine whether they have actually changed, or whether there's still a core of evil within them...
Before his diagnosis, DCI Mark Lapslie thought everyone was like him. Now he knows he suffers from synaethesthesia - a rare neurological condition that has cross-wired his senses. The sickening clamour of sounds he can taste has smothered his marriage and stifled his career.
At the scene of a fatal traffic accident, Lapslie's interest isn't in the recently deceased driver, rather the desiccated corpse found lying next to him. Something about the body stirs a fleeting recollection at the back of Lapslie's mind... he can't quite put his finger on it, but he can almost taste it...
Memories haunt Violet Chambers. Taking tea with her friend Daisy, she knows it's time to move on. As Daisy falls to the floor, eyes streaming, face burning, Violet calmly waits. Black hellebore is remarkably potent. It won't be long now.
In the suburbs, a young mother is looking after her two children. She has been a successful career woman in control of her life, sexually aware and used to attracting any man's undivided attention ... if she wanted to.
But now her control is slipping away. Motherhood is devouring her identity. Her two children depend on her and her husband adores her new role in the home. He is no longer focused on her. Her children are stealing his affection. Her own desires are secondary to everyone else's.
She wants to reclaim her sense of self, her power. Just because she is a mother doesn't mean she will protect those she is supposed to love.
For her, everything is conditional. And everyone is in danger.
One cold, wet evening in an otherwise unusually dry April, a man falls from the fifth floor window of a hotel in Hythe. Did he jump or was he pushed? Detective Chief Superintendent Fran Harman is already struggling to juggle her work and private life: she is having difficulties finding a company willing to restore her and her boyfriend's new home and has to put Mark up in her own cottage while the work is completed. And now, why did this man jump from a hotel balcony when he had a perfectly good balcony at home? A glitch with the water system and her boyfriend's troublesome daughter add more problems to Fran's lot. Can she find the time to discover what it is that appears not quite right about Alec Minton's death?