What She Left

by T. R. Richmond

Books with reviews by our Reader Review Panel Crime / Mystery Debut Books of the Month eBooks of the Month Modern and Classic Literary Fiction Thriller and Suspense

LoveReading View on What She Left

One of our Books of the Year 2015.

October 2015 Debut of the Month.

An intriguing and successful experiment in presenting a crime thriller from a different angle, Richmond's accomplished debut encourages the reader to become the sleuth. Alice Salmon dies in what initially appears a tragic case of drowning. An academic tries to assemble the pieces together and get to the bottom of the mystery and we follow his attempts through the traces of herself Alice scattered in her wake, online and elsewhere: tweets, newspaper cuttings, blogs, diaries, letters, emails. An ever-shifting perspective blurs before the reader's eyes until the whole begins to coalesce and unpeels layers and layers of deceipt and secrets. Another variation on the currently thriving unreliable female narrator bandwagon but one that makes it work in a unique manner. Will give you a lot of second thoughts about what you leave behind in your own day to day life! Genuinely chilling. ~ Maxim Jakubowski

The Lovereading view...

This is likely to be one of 2015's most haunting and unforgettable debuts.  Accident, murder or suicide?  The whole mystery of Alice Salmon’s death is revealed in a series of letters from Professor Jeremy Cooke to an old friend which he never sends (why?) and Alice’s diaries, tweets, blogs, Facebook entries, emails, newspaper articles and the like.  This adds a huge amount of suspense to the tale.  Alice is fairly unstable, self-harming in her teens.  She uses her diary for release, like blood-letting, but how reliable is her narrative?  She was a young journalist (25) when she died.  Jeremy Cooke had a long ago affair with her mother and knew Alice at university.  He wants to write about her final days/hours, hence his research.  The police are completely baffled!  This shocking story of love, loss and obsession where everyone - including himself - has something to hide.  It is a great read.

Maxim Jakubowski

What She Left Synopsis

Alice Salmon young, smart, ambitious - with her whole life ahead of her. Until the night she mysteriously drowns. Nobody knows how or why. But Alice left a few clues: her diary, texts, emails, and presence on social media Alice is gone but fragments of the life she led remain - and in them might lie the answer to what really happened to her - if only someone can piece it all together before it vanishes for ever...

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What She Left Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion, some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can click here to read their full reviews.

  • Richard Hamlin - 'This is one of the most original and engrossing reads I've had the pleasure of reviewing for Lovereading.'
  • Angela O'Donovan - 'Caught my attention from the first page. What a striking way to portray a character - and what led to her mysterious death - by hearing from those  around her, mostly in her last few years...'
  • Teresa O'Halloran - 'Just what happened to Alice Salmon that fateful night? We know she drowned, but was it an accident, suicide or MURDER? T.R. Richmond takes us on a thoroughly modern journey of intrigue.'
  • Tessa Olson - 'This book fascinated me from the first few pages, because in spite of the story which was gripping in itself, it got me thinking.'
  • Sarah Harper - 'A compilation of texts, blogs, letters and personal accounts, this totally unique whodunit holds its secrets close to its chest until the bitter end and sticks in your mind long after.'
  • Jennifer Stoddart - 'I really enjoyed this book, it was very original and really clever....  If you are looking for an engrossing thriller with a difference then this book comes highly recommended!'
  • Edel Waugh - 'This is for those who enjoy a page turner with plenty of mystery that will leave you feeling unsettled about people’s online presence and what can be left behind.'
  • Bethany Dimmock - 'Richmond successfully adds a missing piece to the crime bookshelf by using an intriguing and current narrative style. I loved it.'
  • Janice Maxwell - 'The story grew on me as I got further into it...It was ok.'
  • Gill Wilmott - 'all in all an intriguing debut book by Mr. Richmond.'
  • Nicola Foster - 'The less divulged about this compelling book, the better, at least in my opinion. This is the sort of story that demands to be unravelled piece by piece...'
  • Val Rowe - 'An intriguing and memorable debut novel. A complete page-turner written in a unique format...Do read it!' 
  • Rachel Bridgeman - 'It's a thriller, a modern, involving thriller but more than a 'did she fall, was she pushed, did she jump?' scenario, T.R Richmond's debut looks at the very modern process of grieving.' 
  • Jenny Heardman - 'The story was good and well thought out and I didn’t guess the ending...but the format just wasn’t for me.' 

What She Left Press Reviews

'If you liked The Girl on the Train then I think you'll like this just as much, if not more' -- Scott Pack

'What She Left is an extraordinary and bold creation' -- Laura Wilson Guardian

'Every month brings another book billed the new Gone Girl, but we think we've found a winner' Marie Claire

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781405917551
Publication date: 08/10/2015
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9780718179366
Publication date: 23/04/2015
Publisher: Michael Joseph Ltd an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781405917551
Publication date: 8th October 2015
Author: T. R. Richmond
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 416 pages
Genres: Reader Reviewed Books, Crime / Mystery, Debuts of the Month, eBook Favourites, Literary Fiction, Reading Groups, Thriller / Suspense,
Categories: Crime & mystery,

About T. R. Richmond

T. R. Richmond is an award-wining journalist who's written for local, regional and national newspapers, magazines and websites.   Author photo © Tim Relf

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