On a bright autumn afternoon in Truro, the Napier family celebrates one couple’s golden wedding anniversary and another’s marriage. But for one member of the clan, the day turns dark. Chris Napier, prodigal son, suddenly spots the ragged specter of a former friend, Nicky Lanyon—a man whose own family was ruined by the same twist of fate with which the Napiers were blessed. And the next morning, Chris is horrified to find Nicky dead, hanging from a tree where the boys once played….
For Chris, the suicide opens a floodgate of doubt and suspicion. How did his family’s wealth slip out of the hands of a great-uncle, brutally murdered before he could change his will? Were the men convicted of the crime truly guilty? And who is the mysterious, seductive woman who claims to know the Napiers’ darkest secrets? As the crimes of two families are exposed, a series of violent acts shadows him and suddenly Chris knows he’s in uncharted waters…until a killer drops one last disguise—for the ultimate act of revenge.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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|Title of Mystery & Detective eBook: Beyond Recall|
|Release Date: 02-24-2009|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Random House Publishing Group|
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|Parent title||Beyond Recall|
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By September 1981, the murder of my great-uncle, Joshua Carnoweth, had ceased to be a shocking and lamented blow to Truro's peaceful image of itself. Thirty-four years had transmuted it into a quaint footnote of civic history. Most of the many things said about it at the time had been forgotten, and all of the passions stirred had been dissipated. It wasn't that nobody remembered, it was just that nobody cared enough to call the events to mind. Three decades of the affluent society had cast the rationed pleasures and abundant pains of 1947 into relative antiquity, and with them the memories of those who'd failed to outlive the year.
Even within the family, of which old Joshua had been a semi-detached member, his name was seldom mentioned. Some of us lived in his house. All of us—to varying degrees—prospered thanks to the fortune my grandmother had inherited from him. But most of us had trained ourselves to pretend he'd played no real part in transforming the Napiers from humble shopkeepers into company directors and absentee hoteliers. He hadn't intended to, after all. He hadn't wanted to shower his wealth on us.
He'd probably have been outraged that his murder should have such a consequence. To that extent, perhaps our neglect of his memory was justified. Perhaps anything beyond collective indifference would have been like dancing on his grave. That's how I'd have defended it if I'd had to. But then I was among the least witting of his beneficiaries. I thought I knew the whole story, but I didn't know the half of it. I thought I remembered it exactly as it had been, but what I remembered was a cunningly wrought fiction that had worn dangerously thin without anyone noticing...