Cordelia Russell has been living on the Côte d'Azur for 10 years, posing as an English heiress. Now her money is gone, and her luck is running out. Desperate to escape her grotty flat and grim reality, Cordelia spends a decadent night at the Negresco. But surrounded by the young, beautiful and privileged, she feels her age and her poverty.
As dawn breaks, she stumbles home through the backstreets. Even before she opens her door, she can hear the flies buzzing. It hasn't taken long for the corpse in her bedroom to commence decomposing....
Liz Nugent's novel is the dark, twisted and shocking story of what takes Cordelia from an island childhood in Ireland to ruin in Nice.
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Simon on 06-04-18
I Had To Go All The Way To Get Skin Deep!
Liz Nugent is one to watch, or rather listen to! The prologue to this sets up an intrigue similar to her previous book Unravelling Oliver which was genuinely outstanding. This one then takes a different approach with a largely linear journey from a little girl's childhood to that intriguing opening scene and on to a very powerful climax. For much of the book the journey feels quite predictable even if it is tough. It's hard living in the mind of a character like Cordelia . . . if you don't find it so then please don't add me as a friend on Goodreads because you're one scary person :-)
The quality of the writing draws you in though and it's like a car crash, you know you shouldn't look but of course you do. When you plan that fantasy dinner party of literary characters and you put the likes of Atticus Finch next to Jud Crandall I doubt you will imagine writing out a place card for Cordelia Russell. She leaves a trail of wreckage in her wake and it's steady yet potent drama throughout. She's a strong character who is bound to cause a reaction.
It's only coming up to the very end though that you realise that the story up to then is simply a velvet glove covering an iron fist. And believe me Nugent punches damn hard with that thing with her story's ending. Seriously powerful and quite moving.
The narration, Annette Flynn I assume channels the lead very well and having brief interludes from some of the other key characters works effectively to break things up and offer some contrast.
This is a strong drama and the repeated theme of ripples in the sea generating tidal waves of destruction continues throughout and could almost be the motif of this book. Unlike the previous book which kept me guessing to the end this one lulled me into thinking it was all a tiny bit staid until I realised the trap that Liz Nugent had set me . . . I walked right into it!
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