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An ex-publisher, past Chair of the Crime Writers' Association, and lifelong Londoner, N J Cooper writes for a variety of newspapers and journals and contributes to many radio programmes such as Woman's Hour and Saturday Review. As Natasha Cooper, she is the author of, among many others, NO ESCAPE, A GREATER EVIL and A POISONED MIND. In 2002 she was shortlisted for the Dagger in the Library, an award that 'goes to the author whose work has given most pleasure to readers'.
Shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger 2012. CWA Judges' comment: “Forensic psychologist Karen Taylor returns in a careful and convincing story with a shocker of an opening, a strong romantic theme, great pace and plotting. The characters are particularly well developed.”
Sir Dan Blackwater, well known businessman and philanthropist is found dead one morning in his home on the Isle of Wight. Pinned to the kitchen table with butcher's knives, he has been castrated in what looks like a gruesome act of revenge. The only other person on the scene is his own PA, Sheena. But when DCI Charlie Trench brings her in for questioning, he discovers that she can't remember a thing about the events of last night - the shock seems to have caused her to lose her memory. Unsure whether to believe Sheena's story, Trench calls in forensic psychologist Karen Taylor to help unblock Sheena's memory. But as Karen begins her investigation, she will discover there is much more to the Blackwaters than ever met the public eye. And as she lifts the lid on a truly scandalous history, she will put herself in more danger than she could possibly imagine.
Suzie Gray is only fifteen when she is stabbed to death within metres of her uncle's yacht on the Isle of Wight. Her body is found in the blood-smeared arms of Olly Matken, a family friend who grew up with her. Schizophrenic and vulnerable, he presents a serious challenge to the police. 'I didn't hurt her!'Olly protests. 'All I did was keep her from the devil.' DCI Charlie Trench turns to forensic psychologist Karen Taylor. She knows she should ignore his call, but she cannot. Curiosity and, although she would never admit it to her partner, Will, a dangerous attraction to the brooding detective, push her into a deeply troubling case. Is Olly capable of murder? His own psychologist doesn't think so, but his father does. The only way to find the truth is to identify Olly's devil. And Karen has demons of her own.