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Lady in the Lake

Laura Lippman

A stunning, multi-voiced, period piece – tackling race, gender politics, and the volatility of mid ’60s America – from one of today’s most interesting crime writing voices

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‘Haunting… extraordinary.’ STEPHEN KING

A stunning, multi-voiced, period piece – tackling race, gender politics, and the volatility of mid ’60s America – from the author of SUNBURN

Cleo Sherwood disappeared eight months ago. Aside from her parents and the two sons she left behind, no one seems to have noticed. It isn’t hard to understand why: it’s 1964 and neither the police, the public nor the papers care much when Negro women go missing.

Maddie Schwartz – recently separated from her husband, working her first job as an assistant at the Baltimore Sun– wants one thing: a byline. When she hears about an unidentified body that’s been pulled out of the fountain in Druid Hill Park, Maddie thinks she is about to uncover a story that will finally get her name in print. What she can’t imagine is how much trouble she will cause by chasing a story that no-one wants her to tell.

A Washington Post best book of 2019

Critic Reviews

Haunting... extraordinary.

Stephen King, New York Times
Critic Reviews

Lippman is such a skilful writer, her narrative flitting between perspectives to bring 1960s Baltimore, a world of racial tensions and sexual inequality, to vivid life.

Critic Reviews

This is another masterpiece from Laura Lippman...Lippman stops short of any trite moralising, but, if there is a message in her writing, it’s about the value of complexity - Maddie is a woman torn between passion, respectability and ambition. A real triumph of storytelling and suspense.

Christena Appleyard, Daily Mail
Critic Reviews

A panoramic novel of Baltimore in the 1960s which explores the myriad difficulties faced by a woman who asserts her independence... Complex, hard-hitting and unflinching, The Lady in the Lake confirms Lippman as one of America’s most important literary voices.

Irish Times
Critic Reviews

Apart from the consummately structured narrative, we are given both a vivid evocation of time and place — an unenlightened Ohio of the 1960s —and a cogent sociological study that is not afraid to be critical of its single-minded protagonist.

Financial Times
Critic Reviews

Lippman gives us a kaleidoscope... of opinions and viewpoints across the city that coalesce into a vivid portrait of Baltimore life at the time. The result is a deeply resonant piece of fiction that is truly moving.

Big Issue

Laura Lippman’s novels have won many crime fiction prizes, including the Edgar, Anthony and Agatha Awards. Sunburn (2018), her second consecutive novel to win the eDunnit Award at Crimefest, was also nominated for the CWA Gold Dagger Award and was a Waterstones Book of the Month. Her 2019 novel Lady in the Lake featured in numerous Best of Year Lists,…

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