Dying Flames by Robert Barnard
A Novel of Suspense

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From Robert Barnard, the internationally acclaimed Diamond Dagger-winning crime writer . . .

Some memories are better left buried in the past. Well-known author Graham Broadbent has managed to repress one particularly dangerous memory for many years, but a trip home to a school reunion brings back the shocking reality of a desperate youthful passion.

It all begins with a knock on Graham's hotel door. His visitor is nineteen-year-old Christa, who read in the newspaper that he would be in town. She introduces herself as his long-lost daughter. His daughter? It's true that many years ago Graham had a fling with Christa's mother, an exquisitely alluring school actress named Peggy Somers. The dates don't work, though. Graham maintains he was out of the country when Christa was conceived. He couldn't be her father.

He's almost sorry that he can't claim Christa, a lively young woman who intrigues him in a strange way. And what about Christa's mother, the formidable Peggy, who made such an impression when she portrayed Saint Joan in the school play all those years ago? Why would she have lied to Christa about her paternity? Why name Graham as the girl's father?

Separated from his wife, at loose ends in his writing, Graham takes the fateful step of searching out Peggy. It's a big mistake. Peggy's life, which started with such promise, has been a major disappointment. Now it's about to become a disaster. Peggy lies. She fabricates. She fantasizes. She is the kind of person who will destroy Graham if he lets her.

As Graham finds himself drawn increasingly into the turmoil surrounding this woman and her children, he must deal with deception and, ultimately, with murder. The sins of the past return to haunt the living, and the lives of those who survive will never be the same.

Writing with the piercing insight and wit for which he is renowned, Robert Barnard creates a poignant masterpiece of mystery, as thoughtful as it is entertaining.

About Robert Barnard

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Robert Barnard is the winner of the Malice Domestic Award for Lifetime Achievemetn and the Nero Wolfe Award, as well as the Agatha and Macavity awards.  An eight-time Edgar nominee, he is a member of Britain's distinguished Detection Club, and in May 2003, he received the Cartier Diamond Dagger Award for lifetime achievement in mystery writing.  His most recent novel is A Stranger in the Family, published by Scribner in 2010. He lives with his wife, Louise, in Leeds, England.
Published May 16, 2006 by Scribner. 256 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Romance, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Barnard (The Graveyard Position, 2005, etc.), who has so many aces up his sleeve he could be outlawed in Vegas, presents another rattling good story that glides in and out of the psyche's crevasses.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of Dying Flames: A Novel of Susp...

Publishers Weekly

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The latest mystery thriller from prolific British master Barnard (The Graveyard Position ) may skimp on his trademark mordant humor, but it offers characters with

Jan 30 2006 | Read Full Review of Dying Flames: A Novel of Susp...

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