When a young man is found gruesomely murdered in a London houseboat, it triggers questions about three women who knew him. Laura is the troubled one-night-stand last seen in the victim’s home. Carla is his grief-stricken aunt, already mourning the recent death of yet another family member. And Miriam is the nosy neighbor clearly keeping secrets from the police. Three women with separate connections to the victim. Three women who are – for different reasons – simmering with resentment. Who are, whether they know it or not, burning to right the wrongs done to them. When it comes to revenge, even good people might be capable of terrible deeds. How far might any one of them go to find peace? How long can secrets smolder before they explode into flame?
Hawkins, author of other thrillers such as The Girl on the Train and Into the Water, has made unreliable narrators the basis for all of her novels and A Slow Fire Burning is no exception. The twists and intrigue will keep the reader guessing until the final chapters and the pace will keep most going until then. There is a bit too much of a reliance on coincidence which can take the reader out of the story but overall, A Slow Fire Burning is a satisfying thriller that is a great rebound from the disappointing Into the Water.
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