What is this about?: Lacey Flint finds herself the centre of a Jack the Ripper-like series of murders in London, when the killer targets her and sends her messages about the murders. This is a marvellous, gripping and just plain bloody fantastic beginning to a series featuring Lacey, a woman trying to build a new life for herself and finding herself pulled to the past because of the murders.
What else is this about?: What it means to survive – in two very different ways.
One night after interviewing a reluctant witness at a London apartment complex, Lacey Flint, a young detective constable, stumbles onto a woman brutally stabbed just moments before in the building’s darkened parking lot. Within twenty-four hours a reporter receives an anonymous letter that points out alarming similarities between the murder and Jack the Ripper’s first murder—a letter that calls out Lacey by name. If it’s real, and they have a killer bent on re-creating London’s bloody past, history shows they have just five days until the next attempt.
No one believes the connections are anything more than a sadistic killer’s game, not even Lacey, whom the killer seems to be taunting specifically. However, as they investigate the details of the case start reminding her more and more of a part of her past she’d rather keep hidden. And the only way to do that is to catch the killer herself.
This is one of those books where after reading it, I need to get my review out because it made the hairs on my arms stand on end, it was so good.
So. Now You See Me revolves around Lacey – a young constable in the London police force, who witnesses a murder and then finds herself promptly the focus of a Jack-the-Ripper-esque killer who sends her messages and hints as to the next victim.
Soon, she, her boss, DI Tulloch and Jonesbury, a DI, are all working together as part of a team to find the killer – despite their best intentions to keep Lacey as a witness and out of harm’s way. Lacey as it turns out, dives headfirst into finding the killer, making herself indispensable with her encyclopedic knowledge of the Jack the Ripper. He was, as it turns out, one of her favourite people out of history.
Very quickly, Tulloch begins to trust her, and Jonesbury might be developing romantic feelings for her, but the latter never really takes over the story because as much as he might be in like with her, Jonesbury has more than enough evidence to think she’s the killer or knows who it is, or is involved somehow. That sort of suspicion warrs with his romantic feelings for her, while Lacey finds herself feeling the same things… but she never really trusts him enough.
And that’s just a taste of why I count Lacey Flint as one of the best female characters I’ve read in a long time.
Bolton is a restrained writer, even as she’s describing the gore of the murders, or the tense scenes where the killer gets close enough to Lacey, that I wondered if she’d be next to die. Every bit of this book is filled with a simmering tension because Bolton doesn’t hide the fact that Lacey is in fact a liar, but we just don’t know what about. When all is revealed, it’s a gut punch in how elegant it is, and how it just turns everything you know upside down and I was sitting there going WOW.
This incredible, elegant writing and plotting that leads to a devastating ending I am still trying to digest even as I write this. This should 100% be next on your TBR.