Today’s featured book is an ARC from Amazon Vine, entitled Apple Tree Yard, by Louise Doughty.
The moment builds; it swells and builds—the moment when I realize we have lost. The young barrister, Ms. Bonnard, is on her feet in front of me: a small woman, as you probably remember, auburn hair beneath the judicial wig. Her gaze is cool, her voice light. Her black robes look chic rather than sinister. She radiates calm, believability. I have been in the witness box two days now and I am tired, really tired. Later, I will understand that Ms. Bonnard chose this time of day deliberately. She wasted quite a lot of time earlier in the afternoon, asking about my education, my marriage, my hobbies. She has been down so many different avenues that at first I am not alert to the fact that this new line of questioning has significance. The moment builds slowly; it swells to its climax,
Teaser: Be careful what you wish for, my aunt used to say, darkly. Aunt Gerry had a pessimistic view of life, but then she had ended up raising me and my brother when she hadn’t expected to, so maybe she felt entitled. (p. 134).
Blurb: An intelligent, erotically charged thriller with deep moral implications
Yvonne Carmichael, a renowned geneticist, public authority, and happily married mother of two, sits in the witness box. The charge is murder. Across the courtroom, not meeting her eye, sits her alleged accomplice. He wears the beautiful pin-striped suit he wore on their first meeting in the Houses of Parliament, when he put his hand on her elbow and guided her to a deserted chapel, where she began to undress. As the barrister’s voice grows low and sinuous, Yvonne realizes she’s lost herself and the life she’d built so carefully to a man who never existed at all.
After their first liaison, Yvonne’s lover tells her very little about himself, but she comes to suspect his secrecy has an explanation connected with the British government. So thrilled and absorbed is she in her newfound sexual power that she fails to notice the real danger about to blindside her from a seemingly innocuous angle. Then, reeling from an act of violence, Yvonne discovers that her desire for justice and revenge has already been compromised. Everything hinges on one night in a dark little alley called Apple Tree Yard.
Suspenseful, erotically charged, and masterfully paced, Louise Doughty’s Apple Tree Yard is an intelligent psychological thriller about desire and its consequences by a writer of phenomenal gifts.
What do you think? Would you keep reading?