Hardcover: 464 pages
25th May, 2023.
A sumptuous feast of intrigue. That’s what Bristol-based author Gilly Macmillan has cooked up with her latest psychological crime banquet, The Fall: a breakfast, lunch and dinner of such satisfying proportions, it’ll be a while before you’ll come across anything as remotely satisfying again. Guaranteed.
Nicole and Tom’s life is changed overnight by a ten-million-pound lottery win. Before they know it, they’ve moved into a state-of-the-art Glass Barn conversion in the stunning grounds of Lancaut Manor in Gloucestershire.
But their dream quickly turns into a nightmare when Tom is found dead in the swimming pool, with a wound on his head. Someone close to home must be responsible. But other than the young couple who live in the Manor, and their housekeeper in the Coach House next door, there’s no one around for miles.
Oh, where to begin? Well, leading off are the characters. Each one is an absolutely absorbing, deftly crafted creation; each as uniquely fashioned as the secrets they hold. Patrick is the epitome of selfishness, juxtaposed by the arrogant self-assuredness of Olly. Then there is the charming and uber-obsequious Sasha: herself all charm and Lady Macbethian seduction.
And this is without mentioning Nicole, Anna, Kitty, Hal or Jen.
Superb too is Macmillan’s subtle grip on nuance and drama. While her deliciously framed dialogue leads the reader on a merry dance, all the while aided and abetted by sumptuous descriptive prose, the reader is left grasping at fog in guessing what comes next. As are, it appears, the police.
The author of The Nanny, The Perfect Girl and I Know You Know has, again, excelled herself with this novel. An absolute delight from first to last which should come with a mental health warning: don’t try and guess who’s done what. It’ll drive you crazy at every turn of the page. Better to just buckle in and enjoy the ride Gilly Macmillan takes you on instead.