‘Brilliantly written, intriguing and wholly absorbing’ T. J. Binyon, Evening Standard
Anne Waverly, university lecturer and sometime FBI consultant, lives with the curse of a tragic past – the horrific deaths of her husband and beloved daughter Abby in a mass suicide pact. No one knows what she has suffered better than Glen McCarthy, an FBI expert in cult behaviour.
As a professor of new religious movements, Anne is called on by McCarthy over the years to help solve certain FBI cases, and Anne, in an attempt to atone for the long-ago tragedy, has never refused him. Until now.
But Anne finds she can’t say no to this particular case: a religious community out in the desert that looks as though it has the seeds of dangerous fervour. Slowly Anne works her way into the life of the community, and there meets two children, one of whom reminds her strongly of Abby, her dead daughter, and suddenly she finds herself involved at a level that could be fatal…
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Award-winning author of A Grave Talent, Laurie King is fast establishing herself as one of the most gifted contemporary crime writers. The Birth of a New Moon is her sixth novel, and signals something of a departure from her two popular series: the "Kate Martinelli" and the "Mary Russell" novels. This book introduces Anne Waverly, Professor of Religious Movements and sometime consultant to the FBI, who takes on the task of infiltrating the "Change" community--a religious cult which may, or may not, be about to degenerate into a bloodbath. The tension of this strange, often compelling book derives from that uncertainty, and the gradual characterisation of Waverly's complex involvement--past and present--with new religions. For a thriller, the pace of the novel is remarkably restrained, even slow. King is keen to dwell on the mundane detail of the everyday, to compile her story as if she were building a profile, weaving a set of connections between the form of her novel (its seven sections correspond to seven stages of alchemical reaction) and its themes: the crucible of personal and collective change, the lure of cult religion and, above all, the multiple "characters" of Anne Waverly--Professor, infiltrator, heroine. -- Vicky LebeauReview:
‘Intelligent and disturbing… As thoughtful as it is tense, this is a thriller to bring a chill to the heart’
‘If there is a new P. D. James… I would put my money on Laurie King’
‘Pacy, skilfully layered narrative, notable for its wit, affection and unflashy know-how’
Literary Review (of With Child)
‘Original, and subtle’
Evening Standard (of To Play the Fool)
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Book Description 1999-09-20., 1999. Book Condition: New. HarperCollins. New Ed. Paperback. Book: GOOD. 448pp. . Bookseller Inventory # NF-1614907
Book Description 1999-09-20., 1999. Book Condition: New. HarperCollins. New edition. Paperback. Book: GOOD. 448pp. . Bookseller Inventory # NF-1708489