When Alice Reed goes on her regular morning jog in the peaceful Swiss Alps, she doesn’t expect to save a man from suicide. But she does. And it is her first mistake.
Adamant they have an instant connection, Manfred’s charming exterior grows darker and his obsession with Alice grows stronger.
In a country far from home, where the police don’t believe her, the locals don’t trust her and even her husband questions the truth about Manfred, Alice has nowhere to turn.
To what lengths will Alice go to protect herself and her family?
This is a great debut by Swiss-based author, Louise Mangos, who has clearly used her own experiences of living in Switzerland to create a story with a very authentic feel to it. The mountains and lakes imagery created provides a great backdrop for this tale of dark obsession.
The blurb on the cover, “She should never have saved him”, gives you a good idea of where this story goes. Right from the start, it is clear that saving Manfred is going to cause Alice a good deal of trouble, but actually, I found that the story didn’t quite take me where I expected. Which was good!
When the authorities take no notice of Alice’s complaints about Manfred’s increasingly worrying behaviour, she becomes more and more frustrated and takes matters into her own hands – which only makes things worse. Alice doesn’t always make the right decisions, but her decisions do stay true to her character. With her husband working away for long periods of time, Alice feels isolated and the Swiss locals aren’t going out of their way to make her feel part of the community.
Good pace, good tension and plenty of atmosphere make this an accomplished debut.