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The Echo

It was the smell that Mrs Powell noticed first. Slightly sweet. Slightly unpleasant… It shocked her badly to find a dead man in the corner, his head slumped on his knees. Who was Billy Blake, other than a homeless alcoholic who wandered the streets? Why was he found dead from starvation in one of the richest areas of one of the richest capitals in the world? And why did he die in the garage of wealthy architect Amanda Powell, without once calling for her help? Having thwarted press interest at the time, six months on from the bizarre tragedy Amanda is suddenly eager to talk to journalist Michael Deacon. She seems to have developed a strange obsession with her dead visitor, and Deacons curiosity – both about her and her motives in trying to establish Billys true identity – is intense. But Deacons interest in Billy Blake has more to do with forgotten echoes in his own life than in the moralistic stance taken by Amanda Powell – a woman whose wealth can only be explained if her husband is dead…



‘Cunning psychological mystery’ New York Times

‘Lavish in nuance, nearly seamless in its simultaneous narratives of a life redefined and one awaiting redefinition, The echo is a major novel by an important novelist. That it happens also to qualify as crime fiction is icing on the cake to any fan of the genre. Whatever else you read this season, don’t miss The Echo!’ The Armchair Detective

‘Walters’ latest novel is one of her best…another utterly compelling thriller…a must.’ Nine to Five

‘It grips like steel… plays bloody havoc with your emotions, keeps you awake, ends with joy and relief. Makes John Grisham look like a garden gnome. The best crime novels, any novels, have a social context, which only means they have a clearly defined background, making the human dilemmas at the heart identifiable in any language. The very best contain a wail of protest against stupidity, and more than a hint of humour. Walters has all this in her bloodstream, buty what makes The Echo, as well as those novels preceeding it, such a downright punch in the gut, is the belief in redemption. It’s a peculiar, complicated, feelgood factor, conveyed in robust and witty prose. Passion, compassion, intelligence and romance is what Walters offers, with no quarter for squeamish cowards. Mail on Sunday

‘Sinuous plotting and an ability to bring a large cast of characters quickly to life put Walters’s fifth suspense novel in the same ballpark as the work of Ruth Rendell…Her prose isn’t as shapely as Rendell’s, but she’s a superior storyteller who plumbs psychological depths with an acuity that here, as before, will have readers enthralled.’ Publishers Weekly

‘Walters bids fair to break out of the pack with this teasing, impassioned puzzle, which shows her growing and broadening her range with a vitality as alarming as her characters.’ Kirkus Reviews

‘It is a highly ingenious crime novel written by someone who understands perfectly the technique of suspense.’ Publishing News

‘I was completely captivated’Los Angeles Times Book Review

Minette Walters is one of England’s best-selling crime writers. She is the author of twelve novels, winning the CWA John...