Friday, 16 October 2015

Broken Promise by Linwood Barclay

Broken Promise
By Linwood Barclay
Published by Orion (10 September 2015)
ISBN: 978-1409145943

Publisher's description
The morning it all started, newspaper reporter David Harwood had plenty to worry about. A single parent with no job, forced to return with his young son to the small town of Promise Falls to live with his parents, the future wasn't looking too rosy. So when his mother asked him to look in on his cousin Marla, who was still not quite right after losing her baby, it was almost a relief to put the disaster his own life had become to one side.
The relief wouldn't last long.
When he gets to Marla's house he's disturbed to find a smear of blood on the front door. He's even more disturbed to find Marla nursing a baby, a baby she claims was delivered to her 'by an angel.' And when, soon after, a woman's body is discovered across town, stabbed to death, with her own baby missing, it looks as if Marla has done something truly terrible.
But while the evidence seems overwhelming, David just can't believe that his cousin is a murderer. In which case, who did kill Rosemary Gaynor? And why did they then take her baby and give it to Marla? With the police convinced they have an open and shut case, it's up to David to find out what really happened, but he soon discovers that the truth could be even more disturbing...

My verdict
I'm a big fan of Linwood Barclay books and thought that Broken Promise was yet another great read.

News reporter David Harwood has returned to his childhood town Broken Promise and moved back in with his parents. He's struggling to find a job but needs one urgently to give his young son a stable home. When his cousin Marla is accused of murder and kidnapping a baby, David isn't convinced that everything is what it seems. So he decides to investigate further, which ends up putting him and his family in danger.

There are lots of characters, viewpoints and sub-plots, and it took me a while to get used to this. But by the end of the book, I felt I knew the characters well. The plot kept me intrigued, with murder, corruption, kidnapping and deception at the heart of it. As expected with Linwood Barclay books, there were lots of twists and turns. Admittedly I did guess a couple of these, but this didn't spoil my enjoyment as I raced to the end.

All of the threads of the main plot are tied up by the final page, yet there's still an abrupt ending that does leave the reader hanging. Yes it is a little frustrating, but it does make me look forward to reading the next book in this series.

I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publish in exchange for an honest review.

Read my interview with Linwood Barclay here.

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