Lawyer Vince is now married to his much younger second wife, Kirsten, who has recently given birth to baby Arron. Amanda, a Canadian teenager, is the nanny, looking forward to spending time getting to know a new place, only she has literally been left to look after the baby solo, travelling to the Algarve too. Amanda is an aspiring journalist with her own YouTube channel. She is over the moon to discover the Temple family as neighbours, particularly as she was a huge fan of Max. She finds her curiosity aroused over the events that occurred in 2002, but the past can have a nasty habit of coming back to bite you as she underestimates the danger it puts her in. The parents, Max and Celia, are not people to admire, they are narcissistic, controlling, and snobs with big expectations of their offspring. The Catholic Celia, the once a famous actress, is pushing her energies into painting a picture of family unity and perfection that is far from the truth. The callous Max is a nasty piece of work that inspired nothing but revulsion in me. It is barely surprising that their children should have problems.
Brookmyre serves up a delicious storytelling with characters that are hard to like but so brilliantly compelling. This is a gripping novel of conspiracy, murder, vengeance, and chillingly dark family drama, narrated through the perspective of the various characters. There is plenty of suspense and tension, as the expertly plotted twists deliver their surprises and included is a small role for a well known Brookmyre character. As usual, I loved this latest Brookmyre book, it is entertaining and compulsive reading. Brookmyre fans and other crime fiction readers will enjoy this. Many thanks to Little, Brown for an ARC.