The magnificent Strangers On A Train has had a makeover – here we have two strangers, Ted Severson with at least one too many Gin Martini’s inside him and Lily Kintner who joins him in an airport lounge. The conversation starts and Lily proposes that they tell each other only the truth…. After all they will never meet each other again. During the flight from Heathrow to Boston the conversation continues, aided by another drink or two and Ted confesses that he wants to kill his wife, she’s been unfaithful and if he divorces her she will get the proceeds of his hard-work. To his, and my, surprise she offers to help stating…
‘After all, some people are the kind worth killing, like a lying, stinking, cheating spouse. . . .”
Following the trip Ted and Lily plan to meet, and an assignation is set in an anonymous bar, in a town where neither are known. Ted goes home to Miranda and to the more mundane issue of the restoration of the dream house that he is funding all the time deciding whether he will meet Lily or not.
Lily was late, and as I slowly sipped my Guinness, I became convinced she was not going to show up. I felt a strange combination of relief and disappointment. If I never saw Lily again my life would return to normal. Could I honestly say I would still murder my wife without her help and her encouragement?
A Kind Worth Killing took a few pages to truly captivate me, but once it did I was blown away by the seemingly endless twists and turns and the play the author makes on your emotion all of which are at such a frequency that had me struggling to catch my breath.
The story is told mainly by Ted and Lily and it is via their individual view of the situation that the reader is able to piece together a far bigger picture than first appears to be the case. Later on a detective’s viewpoint is thrown into the mix adding yet more shades to this murky, disturbing and thoroughly enthralling tale. The story was far deeper and darker than I expected and you will struggle to find a character to admire in the whole of the 325 pages, but if you are anything like me you will be interested in what makes them tick!
This book has an almost cinematic feeling and I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see this as a film in the not too distant future.
I’d like to say an enormous thank you to the publishers Faber and Faber for allowing me to read this stunning thriller which was published on 19 February 2015. I was clearly wrong for resisting The Girl With A Heart For A Clock, Peter Swanson’s first novel and will be remedying this very soon.