Last week I dove into Erin Kelly's debut, The Poison Tree. Now, I'm a huge fan of UK psychological suspense. Something in their school of writing is just so different from other books in terms of tone and style and Kelly's book is no different.
Fans of Ruth Rendell, Minette Walters, and Nicci French will truly enjoy Erin Kelly. (And at risk of throwing too many names at you, I'll add two more: Claire Seeber and Sophie Hannah. I've linked to a few of the ones I've posted on in past years in case you're interested in taking a look.)
The Poison Tree is the story of three friends, one magical summer, and the tragic event that changes their lives forever. Karen Clarke meets Biba Capel by accident one afternoon, but that afternoon changes everything for Karen. Biba and her brother Rex live in a world that is unlike anything Karen has ever imagined. They are free and open and basically everything Karen is not. But she wants to be part of their lives at almost any cost. As they spend more and more time together, however, Karen learns that there are secrets hidden in the siblings' pasts. It all comes to an end with one horrible afternoon. Ten years later, it is Karen who is picking up Rex from prison. As she and her daughter welcome Rex back into their lives, she reflects back on the path that led to this present. But can she continue to keep the secrets that she's harbored for over a decade?
My synopsis does this book no justice. Agh! It's one of those cases where I really don't want to give too much away, but the plot is quite complex to be summed up in just a paragraph. Suffice it to say it's fantastic! And just when you think you have it all figured out, Kelly adds another wrinkle to the mix.
Erin Kelly is definitely being added to my Must Read list after a debut like this one.