A perfect life, a perfect love – and a perfect murder.
For over forty years Carol Cage has been living as a recluse in her mansion, Oaktree House. Fear is her constant companion. She’s been keeping a secret – and it’s about to be unearthed.
When she receives a compulsory purchase order for her home, she knows that everyone is going to find out what she did to survive her darkest weeks in 1970. She writes her confession so that we can understand what happened because she wasn’t the only one living a lie. The events that turned her fairy-tale life into a living hell were not all they seemed.
She’s determined not to pay for the mistakes of others; if she has to face justice, then they will too.
Carol Cage has a terrible secret … and she’s about to exact retribution on everyone who’d abandoned her.
Targeted Age Group:: 18+
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
I wanted to explore why women kill and what would push a young girl to that point. My novel is set over two time periods,1970 and today, to further examine the different social restrictions on women in those different time periods. I also wanted to write about secrets and lies and how we can be so wrapped up in ourselves that we fail to acknowledge others around us.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
My main character, Carol Cage had been evolving in my subconscious for years. Eventually I sat down and start to write about her and in effect she told me her story. Other character's evolved as she met them.
Perry Cutler and I buried Frankie Dewberry in the orchard. He lies not far from the garden wall, under the shade of the apple trees. Over the last forty-odd years I’ve spent many hours sitting on the wooden bench we placed next to his grave. It’s a peaceful spot near the boundary wall running to the south-west of my estate. Sitting near him gives me great comfort. I tell Frankie how restricted my life has been since his death. I tell him how sorry I am that our daughter, Francine, died so young. Although I loved him, I never tell him I’m sorry he’s dead.
Outside my study window, the trees and bushes sway stiffly in the winter breeze; their shifting branches stripped bare in the cold air. January is my least favourite month, with its grey, joyless days and cruelty towards my garden.
On my desk, my notebook lies waiting for my reluctant attention. The sick feeling I’ve had this last month stirs as I touch it. It lists the many tasks I have to complete; inventories to write and documents to sign. Chilly air surrounds me as Frankie’s spirit enters the room. Shivering in his ghostly presence, I reread the newspaper article. My house is to be demolished to make way for a ring road. They will find Frankie’s resting place when they cut into the soil protecting my lover, my darling man. Police will ask questions. Strangers, who know nothing about me or my pain, will look at me in disgust.
After they have finished with his skeleton, we can arrange his funeral so that he can be laid to rest in consecrated ground. We will say prayers and sanction his long-awaited trip to heaven, although when I killed him, I was sure that he went straight to hell.
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