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Clutch of Phantoms

UK Publisher: Harper Collins
US Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press

Cass Evesham, one of the rare woman traders in the City, has a shocking weekend, in every sense. Her lover ends their affair in a particularly brutal fashion. Her planned Seychelles holiday goes out of the window. The press besiege her with news about the grandmother she thought was dead. Livia Claughton, now in a safe house under an assumed name, finds it hard to adjust to her new life, and to accept help from those who cant even begin to imagine the reality of the last twenty-five years. Julia Gainsborough, actress daughter of a famous diva killed in her prime, is determined to restart her flagging career – and settle some of her demons – by starring in a cycle of revenge plays. All three women escape the clutches of the past, having to come to terms with their genetic inheritances. The pace is swift and the characters complex in this powerful novel that explores fascinating questions about the roots of violence and the potential for change.


‘[A] gripping page-turner… Layton’s insightful and provocative portrait… will engage and touch the reader… memorable characters and an engrossing plot make this a first-rate psychological thriller.’ Publishers Weekly