From the acclaimed author of The Bones of You comes a haunting and heartbreaking new psychological thriller about a man thrust into the middle of a murder investigation, forced to confront the secrets of his ex-lover’s past.
“I was fourteen when I fell in love with a goddess. . .”
So begins the testimony of Noah Calaway, an ex-lawyer with a sideline in armchair criminal psychology. Now living an aimless life in an inherited cottage in the English countryside, Noah is haunted by the memory of the beguiling young woman who left him at the altar sixteen years earlier. Then one day he receives a troubling phone call. April, the woman he once loved, lies in a coma, the victim of an apparent overdose–and the lead suspect in a brutal murder. Deep in his bones, Noah believes that April is innocent. Then again, he also believed they would spend the rest of their lives together.
While Noah searches for evidence that will clear April’s name, a teenager named Ella begins to sift through the secrets of her own painful family history. The same age as April was when Noah first met her, Ella harbors a revelation that could be the key to solving the murder. As the two stories converge, there are shocking consequences when at last, the truth emerges.
Or so everyone believes. . .
Set in a borderland where the past casts its shadow on the present, with a time-shifting narrative that will mesmerize and surprise, The Beauty of the End is both a masterpiece of suspense and a powerful rumination on lost love.
RELEASED JULY 26, 2016!
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About the Book!
The Beauty of the End
by Debbie Howells
July 26, 2016
The Bones of You was a fascinating mystery largely told from the prospective of the murder victim. I loved the whole thing, so when I saw this latest book by Debbie Howells on Net Galley, I requested it in exchange for a fair and honest review. Upon starting the book, I found it to be a bit confusing for about five or six pages and to be honest, I about gave up on it. However, since I had enjoyed the other book so much, I kept at it and ended up completely taken with this amazing story of a young woman and the two men that loved and/or were obsessed with her. It was quite the odyssey, a mystery that ended up being both captivating in it’s intricateness and bittersweet in its effect on the life of the hero of this book, Noah.
The story, told in both flashbacks and from the present, started the first flashback with the words “I was fourteen when I fell in love with a goddess” thought by Noah. Seeing April for the first time begins his journey of loving her for a good portion of his life. April is beautiful, but broken inside, and that’s something that Noah doesn’t realize for quite some time. To April, Noah is the one good thing in her life, something she feels she doesn’t deserve. Through it all, Will, a friend of Noah and April’s from school, is involved in both of their lives. RIch, totally self involved, Will becomes the catalyst for a good bit of the angst for Noah and April’s lives. Not any less important, a smaller part of the story is told from the perspective of Ella. The reader is kept in the dark about why she is part of the story until it becomes clear later in the book.
The mystery? April is in a coma, due to an overdose, after killing someone. As this happens in the first chapter, that’s not a spoiler. Noah, now close to forty years old, is a washed up, alcoholic ex-lawyer, now writer. He’s pretty much a recluse when Will tells him what happened to April. When Noah decides to figure out what actually happened and investigates, he actually becomes a suspect, instead of April’s knight in shining armor, that he wants to be.
As with The Bones of You, this story starts slow, building in intensity, twisting and turning, until it’s inevitable conclusion. I am one of those people that more often than not, figures out the mystery way before a story is over. I can honestly say, this book was not easily figured out, by any means. A major plus for me. Keep in mind that this takes place in England, but is not a cozy mystery by any means. Instead, it’s not only a mystery, but a story of the lives of these three people and all that happens to them due to their relationships-good or bad-over the course of their lives. Fascinating read and highly recommended to adult mystery readers!
The review copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
About Debbie Howells
Debbie self-published three commercial women’s fiction novels before writing The Bones of You, her first psychological thriller.
She now writes full time from her home, in a small West Sussex village where she lives with her family.