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Persons Unknown by Susie Steiner Read the opening extract of the brand new Susie Steiner book before its publication on 05/04/2018

Reader Reviewed
The Heat of Betrayal by Douglas Kennedy

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A riveting, powerful exploration of love, guilt, survival and how echoes of the past can clamour and cause confusion in the present. This is a story with a ferocious intensity that asks… just how far would you go in order to survive. Primarily about Robin and Paul, each with their weaknesses and strengths, it is the fleeting vivid glimpses of the background characters that binds and unites this story together. The author has the ability to explore humanity and in one sentence he can make you pause and consider. Kennedy paints a vibrant luminous picture with words and the fierce colour of Morocco is given life. Suspense builds, emotions are ripped asunder and you're left to explore the fragility of life in this clever, impactive tale. ~ Liz Robinson

If you like Douglas Kennedy you might also like to read books by Melvyn Bragg, Andrew Rosenheim and Tatiana de Rosnay.

The Good Book Guide logo The Good Book Guide Review. For accountant Robin, life resembles a balance sheet, but where her husband Paul is concerned, something doesn’t quite add up. The couple take a holiday in Morocco, Paul, an artist, filling his sketchbooks with drawings of a country he first knew many years earlier. Robin uses the break to perfect her French and learn a little about the culture, so different from that of her American homeland, but in the course of their stay, she discovers that Paul has a devastating secret. When Paul suddenly disappears from their hotel, apparently injured, Robin finds herself a suspect in the case; her troubles rapidly escalate, and she soon realises that their marriage has never been what it seemed. A chase cross the country in search of the truth culminates in terrifying events in the merciless Sahara desert, a gripping conclusion to a dramatic, if far-fetched, story.
~ Karen Howlett

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 the full reviews.

  • Phylippa Smithson - 'This is Douglas Kennedy at his very, very, very best.'
  • Julie Collins - 'An increasingly tense novel which transports you to the searing heat of Morocco and immerses you in Robin's world as she fights to survive in an alien and unforgiving environment.'
  • Joan Sidwell - 'absolutely riveting, a real page turner with twists and turns and gasp out loud narrative, living up to his reputation as a great storyteller.'
  • Linda Hill - 'The Heat of Betrayal  lives up to all the other Douglas Kennedy books I've read. I couldn't put it down and read it in a day.'
  • Jane Nicol - 'What starts as a romantic trip abroad turns into a nightmare as Robin tries to solve the mystery of her disappearing husband. An exciting and interesting read.'
  • Carolyn Huckfield - 'Kennedy writes from a woman’s perspective better than any other author I know and the ending of this story is really rather wonderful...'
  • Nickey Hawryszczuk - 'One word sums up this book........AMAZING! I could not put it down. What an incredible author. I will be reading more from him after this.'
  • Fran Woodrow - 'A one-sitting book exploring life and relationship issues against the heady backdrop of Morocco.'
  • Dana Captainino - 'Douglas Kennedy is adept at giving the reader a very real flavour of wherever he sets his novel and the heat of the journey across Morocco parodies the intense heat of the betrayal that Robin finds herself in.'
  • Caroline Mathews - 'I enjoyed the setting of the book, and the descriptive passages really evoked North Africa and Morocco...I did find the action slowed down a bit halfway through.'
  • Nicola Kingswell - 'A roller-coaster of an adventure about love, trust and ultimately survival...I loved this book. It is a brilliant page-turner of a thriller and had me hooked from the very beginning.'
  • Sharon Wood - 'The Heat of Betrayal would make a good holiday read - something you can pick up and put down without needing too much concentration, but a literary great it ain't.'
  • Victoria Halliday - 'A fast moving, plot-driven novel, this is an easy and enjoyable read.'
  • Sian Spinney - I enjoyed this book though I didn't particularly have any real feelings for Robin.  Not Douglas Kennedy at his best but a decent read that will while away a few hours.'
  • Susan Andrews - 'I really enjoyed the book and would recommend it. Have to go back and read the other books by Douglas Kennedy that I missed!'
  • Mary Chapman - 'I did finish the book because only that it was a review book if I had bought this I would have not finished it...'
  • Ann Quintilla - 'This is a gripping story about betrayal and the determination to survive.'

Win Books from the Manon Bradshaw Thriller Series!

Persons Unknown, the second book in Susie Steiner's crime thriller series, is now out in paperback and to mark the publication we are giving away paperback copies of both Missing, Presumed and Persons Unknown to THREE lucky winners!

To have a chance of winning one of these fantastic prizes, click the button below. Please note that this draw is open only for UK residents and is free to enter, multiple entries from the same email address will only be counted once.

The draw closes on 30 April 2018. The winners will be notified by 14 May 2018,

Good luck!

Enter prize draw Draw closes: 30/04/2018


The Heat of Betrayal by Douglas Kennedy

Robin knew Paul wasn't perfect. But he said they were so lucky to have found each other, and she believed it was true. In the heady strangeness of Morocco, he is everything she wants him to be - passionate, talented, knowledgeable. She is convinced that it is here she will finally become pregnant. But when Paul suddenly disappears, and Robin finds herself the prime suspect in the police inquiry, everything changes. As her understanding of the truth starts to unravel, Robin lurches from the crumbling art deco of Casablanca to the daunting Sahara, caught in an increasingly terrifying spiral from which there is no easy escape. With his acclaimed ability to write page-turners that also make you think, Douglas Kennedy takes the reader on a roller-coaster journey into a heart of darkness that asks the question: what would you do if your life depended on it? Kennedy is a complete genius when it comes to understanding the minds of stylish but troubled women. (Daily Mirror). Kennedy is an absolute master at love stories with heart-stopping twists. (The Times). Kennedy's skill is to send you racing down the slope of sheer story. (Esquire).

Browse inside this book


'Romance noir, superbly written' The Times

'A psychological adventure illuminated by a desert sun' New Statesman

About the Author

Douglas Kennedy

Douglas Kennedy's previous novels include the critically acclaimed bestsellers The Big Picture, The Pursuit of Happiness, A Special Relationship and The Moment. He is also the author of three highly-praised travel books. The Big Picture was filmed with Romain Duris and Catherine Deneuve; The Woman in the Fifth with Ethan Hawke and Kristen Scott Thomas.

His work has been translated into twenty-two languages. In 2007 he was awarded the French decoration of Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, and in 2009 the inaugural Grand Prix de Figaro. Born in Manhattan in 1955, he has two children and currently divides his time between London, Paris, Berlin, Maine and New York..

Author photo © Paul Stuart

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Book Info

Publication date

7th April 2016


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Arrow Books Ltd an imprint of Cornerstone


336 pages


Relationship Stories
Thriller / Suspense
Literary Fiction
Romantic Fiction
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)



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