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The Night He Left

by Sue Lawrence

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At 7pm on 28th December 1879 a violent storm batters the newly-built iron rail bridge across the River Tay, close to the city of Dundee. Ann Craig, a wealthy woman, is waiting for her husband, a mill owner, to return home. From her window she sees the bridge collapse, the train he is travelling on ploughing into the sea, killing all those on board. As Ann investigates the events leading up to the crash, doubt is cast on whether Robert was on the train after all. If not, where is he, and who is the mysterious woman who is first to be washed ashore? In the present day, Fiona Craig's new partner Pete, an Australia restauranteur, clears the couple's bank account before abandoning his car at Dundee Airport and disappearing. When the Police discover his car is stolen, Fiona conducts her own investigation into Pete's background, slowly uncovering dark secrets and strange parallels with the events of 1879. Following on from her acclaimed debut, Fields of Blue Flax, chef, food writer and TV presenter, Sue Lawrence, serves up another brilliant historical mystery, meticulously researched and densely plotted, with plenty of twists and turns and a gripping climax.… (more)

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3.5 1879, a viscous storm hits Dundee, Scotland, as Anne and her two children wait at the window for the returning train bringing home their husband and father. As they watch the train cross the bridge at the river Tay, they soon see a horrific tragedy. The bridge collapses and the train descends into the river, killing all. But was Robert on that train?

In the present day Fiona living with Pete and her son by her dead husband, weakens to find Pete gone and their bank account emptied. How these two stories tie together encompasses the plot.

Very atmospheric and I actually liked both parts of this story. The historical story is very twisty as a woman must now fight form the survival of herself and her children. But Anne has a past, not known to many, and she wishes to keep it that way. The present day story had some quite likable characters. So all was well and good, reading along nicely. But, then came the ending, which I felt not only rushed but a very strange way to end this book. Not quite fitting. Still I did fond it enjoyable and the author did a good job tying the two stories together.

ARC from Netgalley. ( )
  Beamis12 | Apr 30, 2016 |
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At 7pm on 28th December 1879 a violent storm batters the newly-built iron rail bridge across the River Tay, close to the city of Dundee. Ann Craig, a wealthy woman, is waiting for her husband, a mill owner, to return home. From her window she sees the bridge collapse, the train he is travelling on ploughing into the sea, killing all those on board. As Ann investigates the events leading up to the crash, doubt is cast on whether Robert was on the train after all. If not, where is he, and who is the mysterious woman who is first to be washed ashore? In the present day, Fiona Craig's new partner Pete, an Australia restauranteur, clears the couple's bank account before abandoning his car at Dundee Airport and disappearing. When the Police discover his car is stolen, Fiona conducts her own investigation into Pete's background, slowly uncovering dark secrets and strange parallels with the events of 1879. Following on from her acclaimed debut, Fields of Blue Flax, chef, food writer and TV presenter, Sue Lawrence, serves up another brilliant historical mystery, meticulously researched and densely plotted, with plenty of twists and turns and a gripping climax.

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