Today it’s my turn on the blog tour for The Lies Within by Jane Isaac and I’ll be sharing an extract with you all!
About the book:
Be under no illusions by her kind face and eloquent manner… This woman is guilty of murder.
Grace Daniels is distraught after her daughter’s body is found in a Leicestershire country lane. With her family falling apart and the investigation going nowhere, Grace’s only solace is the re-emergence of Faye, an old friend who seems to understand her loss.
DI Will Jackman delves into the case, until a family tragedy and a figure from his past threaten to derail him.
When the police discover another victim, the spotlight falls on Grace. Can Jackman find the killer, before she is convicted of a crime she didn’t commit?
About the author:
Jane Isaac lives with her husband, daughter and dog, Bollo, in rural Northamptonshire, UK. Her debut novel, An Unfamiliar Murder, introduces DCI Helen Lavery and was nominated as best mystery in the ‘eFestival of Words Best of the Independent eBook awards 2013.’
The Truth Will Out, the second in the DCI Helen Lavery series, was nominated as ‘Thriller of the Month – April 2014’ by E-thriller.com and winner of ‘Noveltunity book club selection – May 2014’.
In 2015 Jane embarked on a new series, featuring DI Will Jackman and set in Stratford upon Avon, with Before It’s Too Late. The second in the series, Beneath The Ashes, was published by Legend Press on 1st November 2016 with the 3rd, The Lies Within, in May 2017.
Both DI Jackman and DCI Lavery will return again in the near future. Sign up to Jane’s newsletter on her website at http://www.janeisaac.co.uk for details of new releases, events and giveaways.
August 2016 – Criminal Court 3, Leicester Crown Court
The barrister tilts his head back. “Members of the jury, I turn
your attention to Grace Daniels, the woman who stands before
you this afternoon.”
The eyes of the courtroom descend upon Grace. She
searches for a gap in the sea of faces, desperately trying to
maintain her composure while avoiding the anxious gaze of
her youngest daughter, Lydia, seated next to Phil in the public
gallery. Right now she wants nothing more than to be swaddled
in the comfort of their support. But even the shortest of glances
will induce fresh tears to her eyes. And she can’t allow that
to happen. Not now.
The barrister, James Sheldon, a tall, slender man with curls
of thick brown hair that tumble out of the back of his wig,
pauses for the briefest of moments. “During the course of this
trial you will hear accounts from friends, family, neighbours
and employers about her good character and nature. She is a
mother, sister-in-law, daughter and grandmother. A woman
who works and contributes to the fabric of society. But you
are not here to consider her character. You are here to examine
the facts.” His words hang in the air as he moves down the
line, pulling the eyes of every juror with him.
Grace notices Lydia turn away and risks a fleeting glance.
When her girls were young she’d impressed upon them the
importance of being honest. ‘You have nothing to worry about
if you’ve done nothing wrong,’ she would say. What would
Lydia make of that today? She’s sixteen now, although her
blue eyes bulge with the same trepidation they held on her
first day at school.
Grace flicks her gaze to the jury. Seven women and five
men. On the face of it, they seem a reasonable mix. Earlier
that morning, several of them faltered over their words as
they were sworn in. It was strange to think that they could
possibly feel more nervous than she. The woman on the end
wore a dark jumper overlaid with a colourful vintage scarf.
Sheets of hair were tucked behind her ears, her expression
kind and comforting.
Sheldon is concluding the prosecution opening with the
assured confidence of a man skilled in his art. In spite of
the curled wig, the black gown that flaps behind him as he
moves, his gestures are convincingly subtle. A simple touch. A
gentle, considered turn. No sweeping theatrics. Not a moment’s
hesitation in his voice.
Grace looks across at the profile of Eleanor Talbot-Deane,
her defence barrister, through the glass screen that separates
her from the courtroom. Eleanor is as still as stone. His words
haven’t fazed her, yet Grace feels her hands start to tremble
and squeezes them together.
“Over the next few days the Crown will produce compelling
evidence to support the fact that this woman meticulously
planned a cold-blooded murder.”
Grace recoils, aware of Lydia’s eyes boring into the side
of her face. They’d talked about this moment, several times.
Together. With her solicitor. With her barrister. As a family. But
no amount of talking could prepare her for the real prospect
of losing her mother to the confines of prison walls. No child
should ever have to watch a parent on trial.
“You will hear evidence that places her at the scene,
witnesses who heard her plan the murder,” Sheldon continues.
“Plan how to kill a woman who considered herself a friend.”
A head on the jury turns. The woman with the vintage scarf.
Grace imagines she is just like her, with a job and a family; a
small dog that sits beside her on the sofa while she watches
MasterChef on television. But there is no familiarity in her
expression, no sorority. Just cold, hard shock.
Grace’s throat constricts. Even though she has been briefed
on how to react, what to say, what not to say. Even though
she has been dragged through hours of police questioning,
nothing can truly prepare her for the exhausting fatigue that
exudes from the intensity of hanging on to every word, every
tiny detail, still trying to find a hole in the evidence mounting
against her. And this is only the beginning of a trial that is
scheduled to run for days.
“Be under no illusions by her smart clothes, her kind face,
her eloquent manner. Do not form judgements. I implore you
to keep a clear mind and consider the evidence in front of you.
And that evidence alone. This woman is guilty of murder. And
by the time this trial has finished, you will be in no doubt that
she should go to prison for life.”
Follow the blog tour: