A terrifyingly vivid portrayal of the murderous impulses hiding in the squalor of North London, form the world's best living crime writer.
In traditional fairytales the handsome prince rescues the beautiful princess from her wicked stepmother, and the couple live happily ever after. But in Ruth Rendell's dark and damaged contemporary universe, innocent dreams can turn into the most terrible living nightmares.
Two damaged children: Teddy Brex, whom no-one loved, and so found it easier to relate to objects or things which never let him down, and Francine Hill, who was discovered sitting by the body of her mother, her skirt red with blood. She couldn't tell the police or her father anything to help track down the killer ...
Children grow up in different ways. Teddy became a handsome young man, Francine was beautiful a sight for sore eyes. But it was death that brought them together.
'A top-notch thriller that will, I promise, have you nibbling your nails.' - The Daily Mail
'Masterfully spooky. Don't read this alone.' - Red Magazine
'Rendell weaves the interlocking desires into a frightening tapestry of warped minds ... A tale as chilling as any Rendell has written to date.' - The Times