Publisher: Cornerstone Digital (6th October 2017)
Print Length: 356 pages
Dennis Danson is on death row, found guilty of killing a teenage girl. He's been incarcerated for twenty years while the outside world argues the validity of his conviction. Many are convinced that Dennis is also responsible for a number of other missing girl cases centered on Red River County, Florida. Countering that belief are film documentaries and a book which call into doubt the premise upon which Danson's original trial was based.
Across the Atlantic in England, Samantha has no doubt: Dennis Danson is the victim of a miscarriage of justice. Fresh from a relationship that finished in unfortunate circumstances, Samantha is without a boyfriend, vulnerable, and looking for a cause to give her life meaning. So starts a correspondence between Sam and Dennis which quickly progresses from one of moral support to something much more personal. It's a letter exchange that prompts Sam to abandon her job and travel to America in order to visit Dennis. Soon an intimate friendship develops between the two. An intimate friendship that is conducted through the perspex barrier that separates visitor from inmate in the prison's visiting facility. Women who become romantically involved with incarcerated murderers have featured in the media, their emotional attachments examined and dissected, but author Amy Lloyd throws a new perspective on the topic. The prejudices of small town America play out against the liberal bent of a California film crew. As the plot progresses the reader is filled with a sense of unease. And then there's Lindsay, a girl from Danson's past, mysterious and menacing, exercising an inexplicable hold over him. It's a mix that you'll feel is inevitably leading toward a tragic outcome — cue Sam and Danson's circumstances undergoing a dramatic transformation.
The novel is expertly crafted. Written with a narrative that flows with a pace that never slackens, all the while the tension inexorably accumulating. It will keep you tight within its grip, ever-expectant of a shattering twist. Only when the twist is delivered you'll find yourself totally unprepared.
Who is the real victim? And whose life is really under threat?
If you've overindulged on the amateur-sleuth-solves-crime genre then this novel is the perfect antidote. Read it — and if you want a sound night's sleep, make sure you've given yourself enough time to finish it before nightfall.