A dark, gripping and disturbing love story that, through different characters, times and places never lets you settle into thinking you know what will happen next.
Angel Merlowe, a naive 18 yr old orphan who lives with her uncle's family, falls quickly and desperately in love with the enigmatic and much older Alexander Sorel. But after a happy start shadows from Alex’s past life and the discovery of a diary, full of dangerous secrets, really does bring to mind the old adage marry in haste, repent at leisure.
An absorbing read - highly recommended.
A 'Piece of Passion' from the author...
Why did I write my book? Why should anyone read it?
'When I read Jean Rhys’ Wide Sargasso Sea I was blown away. I’d read Jane Eyre, of course, so I knew all about Mrs Rochester, the mad first wife – or so I thought. But it had never occurred to me to wonder why Rochester had married her in the first place, or what she was like when she was young, or how she’d ended up, mad and hateful, in that attic. Jean Rhys made me think quite differently about someone I’d always taken completely for granted – not about Jane but Rochester’s first wife. I was fascinated by the idea that there are two stories - the story one reads and the ‘other story’, the version of events no one hears; the one that lies behind the characters one meets in a book, and this was what I wanted to explore in Strange Embrace. Except rather than just telling the story behind the story I thought I’d combine the two and tell both tales at once. Strange Embrace is about two very different women who have nothing in common except a man and how this links them, tying them irrevocably together, even through murder.' - Gail Levy
‘And that was the beginning, Angel thought, looking back from the confines of a stuffy courtroom, listening to a case for murder being made by the Crown. Oh yes, that was exactly when it had all begun.’
England, 1950. On a warm summer night at a party Angel meets Alexander Sorel and marries him three months later. They have a baby, a daughter called Nina. Angel’s happiness seems complete. But then danger threatens those she loves and she is forced to realise things are not as perfect as they appear.
Angel knew Alex had been married before to Zara Hoffman, living somewhere in Germany, but not that Zara is an alcoholic, obsessed with him even after their divorce, or that she’s threatened many times to kill him.
A few months later, Alex disappears. Desperate to find him, Angel’s only clue is the diaries of an old schoolfriend of Zara’s, the young and beautiful Antoinette. She is Jewish, writing vividly in 1937 Berlin as the Nazis are rising to power, and what Angel learns from the pages of the diary will change her life forever. Now, at a trial for murder, she is forced to choose between her love for Alex and what she has uncovered about his past. If it’s a choice between love and conscience, how can she keep silent?
Closing date: 06/09/2018
Publication date: 31/10/2012
Publisher: Quartet Books
|Publication date:||31st October 2012|
|Genres:||Crime / Mystery, Thriller / Suspense,|
|Categories:||Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945),|
Gail Levy was born and grew up in London. She went to London University and read philosophy at Bedford College in Regent’s Park, then did a M.Phil at UC. and taught Philosophy for the Extra-Mural Department of London University and then at Greenwich University for 10 years. When her baby was born she moved out of London and began writing fiction full-time. Strange Embrace is her second novel.More About Gail Levy