Revenge Ritual

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REVENGE RITUAL paperback is now available from THE CURIOUS OTTER BOOKSHOP in OTTERY ST MARY  as well as from Amazon in eBook and paperback.

When high-flying criminologist Dr Kate Trevelyan is seconded to the Jurassic Coast to research the growing hostility towards migrant workers, she has no idea that someone is studying her every move. Or that her father would be killed in a suspicious house fire just days after her arrival in her hometown.
Can Kate navigate her way through the web of lies and deceit and identify her father’s killer before she becomes the next victim?

REVIEWS
This is a fabulous debut from a new author. A young criminologist becomes involved personally in an investigation in more ways than one when she meets a property developer at her father’s house. This book packs in a lot in a short space of time and the characters are well developed. It’s difficult to give a sense of the plot lines without giving too much away but it involves property development, fraud, psychopathy, immigration as well as love and loss. I’ll be looking out for the next offering from CJ Browne and I hope it pushes Dr Kate Trevelyan further on the global stage. Very well done and I loved the ending.
Alison Gray on Amazon 20/10/15

Wow! What an amazing debut novel by CJ Browne! I was immediately enthralled by the story. I loved the plot and the way Browne cleverly wove this story together. I found myself suspecting everyone, and I felt like I was right alongside Dr. Kate, trying to unravel the clues. When she finally finds someone who can offer a clue, there’s another murder. So frustrating, but in a good way. I was engaged and entertained for the entire read.
Great tension-building and a startling conclusion no one expects… Nothing is at it seems and you’ll never guess how this story will end. If you like psychological thrillers or mystery, this is a must read. You won’t be disappointed! Definitely worthy of 5 stars! I can’t wait to read more books by this author.
Clarissa Lynch on Goodreads, 6/10/15

REVENGE RITUAL is one of those books that immediately draws you in. You want to know what happens and why. This is a story about family passions and friendship – but they’re not always what they seem.
Jane Bidder. Author of ‘Guilty’ and ‘The Witness’.

 

Beach below Orcombe Point, Exmouth - close to where Elliot goes over the cliff at the start of Revenge Ritual

Beach below Orcombe Point, Exmouth – close to where Elliot goes over the cliff at the start of Revenge Ritual

Here’s a taster:

Prologue

 

Western Evening Gazette, September 18th, 1987

MENTAL NURSE KILLED IN CLIFF TOP TRAGEDYPATIENT STILL MISSING

Elliot Wagner, 34, a nurse at Pastures Mental Hospital was killed last night when his Norton motorcycle plunged off the cliffs near Orcombe Point, Exmouth. A patient from the hospital’s secure unit was believed to be with Mr Wagner at the time. Rescue Services confirmed that although a woman’s possessions were recovered from the scene her body is still missing, believed to have been swept out to sea.

*

Twenty Eight Years Later

Looking at him now it’s hard to believe I ever found this pathetic streak of manhood attractive. So as I bend down to remove his shoes I try to sound sympathetic.

‘Put your feet up, Terence. You look exhausted.’

He’s still wearing the old fashioned Oxfords. He always fussed about his shoes: just one of the many things I hated about him. Last thing at night, he’d sit at the end of the bed polishing away and looking everywhere but at my naked body. It was always an effort to get him interested and that hasn’t changed.

I touch the only part of him that’s sweating. His socks feel unpleasantly moist as I lift his feet up on to the chaise longue. His sweat clings to my hands and I wipe them against the cool silk of my dress. The clingy fabric’s too hot for this weather but I’m wearing it to please him – for one last time. And he did look pleased watching me unfasten the top two buttons to remind him of what I can do for him. That was before I’d devoured the exotic meal he’d lovingly prepared – he always was a good cook – and he’d downed the 1998 Grand Cru, Cote de Nuits without noticing the Restoril I’d dropped in.

He looks pathetic. His eyes have glazed over and his silver speckled hair is sticking to his forehead. Now sweat stains are spreading from under his armpits across his crisp Italian-style shirt. He’s run out of conversation.

‘Well, say something,’ I encourage – but of course he can’t. The drugs are starting to work. He can still move his mouth but the words come out like half formed bubbles.

‘Tha … thanks.’

Always polite but then manners are so important, aren’t they Terence?

He struggles to sit up, ‘Wassup … with?’

‘What’s up with me? Absolutely nothing.’ He feebly wags his head from side to side and I watch in disgust as more spittle runs down the side of his chin. ‘Oh, you mean what’s up with you? Well, that would be telling.’

Sunbeams stream in through the half drawn shutters and cast a strip of brightness across his face illuminating dust motes hanging in the air above his drooping head. I enjoy the bemusement clouding those puppy dog eyes. He’s trying to make sense of what’s happening – how an evening of pleasure could go so horribly wrong. Don’t worry Terence. There’s worse to come.

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