Rising London criminal defense lawyer Alison Wood, the complex and deeply flawed narrator of British author Tyce’s promising debut, welcomes her first murder case—something she has worked toward for 15 years. Her client, Madeline Smith, who was arrested for stabbing her husband to death, wants to plead guilty. But Alison tries to persuade Madeline to consider other options. Meanwhile, Alison’s personal life is in shambles. She must deal with a failing marriage and a nearly abusive affair with another lawyer. To make matters worse, she begins receiving threatening texts, tied to her affair, from an unknown source. Soon, her husband wants a divorce, and custody of her six-year-old daughter is at stake. As Alison prepares for Madeline’s case, she begins to see disturbing similarities between her client’s life and her own. This gritty psychological thriller has a predictable twist, bit it’s still a page-turner that drives to a shocking and satisfying ending. Readers will eagerly await Tyce’s next. Agent: Veronique Baxter, David Higham Assocs. (U.K.). (Feb.)
A toxic marriage, a murder trial, and questions about who is and who isn't a good mother are at the center of Tyce's debut domestic thriller.
After 15 years on the job, Alison Wood, a London barrister, is handed her first murder case. Her task is to defend Madeleine Smith, who was found with her clothes covered in blood next to the body of her husband, Edwin. Alison's excited about her case, but she's distracted by excessive drinking with her colleagues and rough and dirty sex with Patrick Saunders, a legendary philanderer and her instructing solicitor in the murder case. Madeleine confesses that she stabbed Edwin, but Alison isn't sure Madeleine's telling the truth. In addition to being an alcoholic, Alison is an unfaithful wife to her husband, Carl Bailey, and a neglectful mother to their 6-year-old daughter, Matilda. When Alison receives a series of anonymous, vulgar, and accusatory text messages, she falls deeper into her toxic habits of using alcohol and sex to avoid dealing with her issues. Carl, a part-time psychotherapist, seems stubbornly determined to ignore the fact that his wife needs help. Some late-breaking revelations almost make Alison slightly sympathetic, but not in time to overcome how dislikable she is. The rushed ending isn't entirely credible or satisfying, as Alison's unethical choices enable her to easily resolve all her problems.
Readers who enjoy wallowing in other people's misery will relish this disturbing story.
"Intriguing....A surefire bestseller!"Iris Johansen, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Shattered Mirror
"BLOOD ORANGE kept me frantically turning the pages, desperate to know what would happen next. A superb, compulsive read!"Tess Gerritsen, New York Times bestselling author
"BLOOD ORANGE is destined to be a debut that everyone is talking about in 2019. Dark, original and utterly compelling, I could not put it down. And what a twist at the end!"Lisa Jewell, New York Times bestselling author of Then She Was Gone
"In BLOOD ORANGE, Harriet Tyce brings a new layer of visceral, addictive dark to domestic noir. Obsession, revenge, lust and murder play out on the pages as a female barrister tries to hold her life together while her personality tries to tear it apart. At once shocking and riveting, I simply couldn't stop reading. Bravo!"Sarah Pinborough, New York Times bestselling author
"A classic thriller with complex and compelling characters."Clare Mackintosh, nationally bestselling author of I See You
"A fantastic debut. Dark. Twisted. I read it in one heart-stopping sitting!"Robert Bryndza, #1 Wall Street Journal bestselling author of The Girl in the Ice
"A dark and disturbing domestic noir."Louise Jensen, USA Today bestselling author
"Combines sharp spare prose with a gloriously twisted plotI read this in one heart-pounding, furiously angry sitting."Emma Flint, nationally bestselling author of Little Deaths
"BLOOD ORANGE is a brilliant marriage between psychological suspense and legal thriller. The debut novel of the year. It's a stunning portrayal of both one woman's fight for justice for an accused murderer-and of a life spinning out of control. Harriet Tyce is now on my 'must read' list."Jeff Abbott, New York Times bestselling author
"Gritty and compelling, BLOOD ORANGE drags you right into the hearts of the flawed characters and their stories from the get go. A book that will keep you up all night."Kate Hamer, bestselling author
"This brilliant debut from Harriet Tyce has it all."Rachel Abbott, 3 million copy eBook bestselling author of Only the Innocent
"It was all brilliantly done. Writing, plotting, characterswonderful and deeply satisfying, devour-in-one-sitting stuff!"Lucy Mangan, Guardian and Stylist columnist and author of Bookworm: A Memoir of Childhood Reading
"A promising debut... A page-turner that drives to a shocking and satisfying ending."Publisher's Weekly
"This debut novel by a former barrister displays the pacing skills and smooth prose of a seasoned author, as suspense builds to a stunning climax. Keep your eyes on Tyce."Booklist
"Chilling debut...beautifully crafted...A domestic thriller that twists and turns down a dark rabbit hole of suspense toward an explosive ending that will stick with readers long after they turn the page."The Big Thrill
"BLOOD ORANGE caters to [a] growing craving to dissect people's hidden impulses, [with] a staggering finale that is guaranteed to leave readers shocked."Palm Beach Post
"A serious contender for best debut of the year."CrimeReads.com, Best New Thrillers
"Outstanding...The story of a marriage, of the point where love can turn to hate and how a person must regain her own sense of self. Obsession is a dangerous thing."South Florida Sun-Sentinel
"The plot of this engrossing first novel is as audacious as anything you'll read this year."Toronto Star
Taking on her first murder case, with her defendant a mild-mannered housewife proclaiming, "I did it. I killed him," married lawyer Alison can't break free from a dangerous affair with the senior legal partner who got her the case. A debut novel bought in a two-book pre-empt and sold to eight other territories thus far; with a 75,000-copy first printing.