A troubled boy. A psychotherapist specializing in past life regression. An unsolved murder from 100 years ago that threatens to take another life. Twelve-year-old Ben believes he is a girl. When therapist Mary suggests hypnosis, he recalls a past life as herring girl Annie. The session ends abruptly and Mary begins to suspect that Annie might have been murdered. As the therapy continues, the events surrounding Annie’s final days start to emerge: her secret affair with young fisherman Sam; the violent jealousy of his rival Tom; the illegitimate pregnancy of her best friend Flo; the emerging homosexuality of her brother Jimmy. Before long Mary and Ben discover that all of these people lived and died over a century earlier in the fishing port where they live. If reincarnation happens in clusters, perhaps Ben's friends and family were involved in the dramas of 1898, and the murderer is still among them. Can they solve the mystery before tragedy strikes again?
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Debbie Taylor is the founder and editorial director of the women's writing magazine Mslexia. She has worked as an editor at New Internationalist and Writing Women magazines and as a writer, researcher, and project manager for many organizations, including Oxfam, Anti Slavery, BBC 2, Channel 4, UNICEF, and WHO. Also the author of The Fourth Queen and Hungry Ghosts, she lives in North Shields, U.K.Review:
"Takes us where we're not yet comfortable but dying to go: beyond normal. The novel interweaves lives, past and present, in a saga that will make you scoff at the absurdity, sigh at the humanity, and sink into your chair to have an occasional sob...You'll be hooked." - gender-focus.com
"This powerfully atmospheric novel absolutely enthralled me...As the book moved between past and present, then turned from Armistead Maupin into Agatha Christie, I was utterly gripped. It's brilliantly plotted, beautifully written, full of memorable characters and steeped in so much local flavour you can almost taste the kippers." - Daily Mail
"Fascinating..it is not necessary to believe in reincarnation to enjoy Taylor's story. She writes with such verve and conviction that it is easy to suspend disbelief and enjoy every moment of this gripping tale." Book Oxygen
"Fascinating A beautiful, skilled book and a thoroughly riveting read" - Northern Soul magazine
"Part historical saga, part psychological mystery, Debbie Taylor’s book is a gripping story about how the past can never truly be lost. Extensively researched, even the more far-fetching coincidence’s in Ben’s life are given plausibility and her characters are lively and captivating." - We Love this Book
"A great read." - Weightwatchers' Magazine
"The resolution of the mystery is satisfying, as are the very real connections between the characters past and present. A great book for historical fiction readers." - Kirkus Reviews
"An engaging and detailed historical mystery." - Publishers Weekly
"Wonderful. Conjures up the past with such visceral intensity that you feel as if you are there." Sarah Dunant, author of The Birth of Venus
"A vividly imaginative, sensuous and atmospheric novel." Helen Dunmore, author of The Siege
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