Five Strangers

by E.V. Adamson

Available October 5
Hardcover, $25.95
Purchase this title through a local bookstore using IndieBound

Five strangers witness a brutal murder in broad daylight ― but can they truly believe what they saw?

With its grassy hills and breathtaking city views, London’s Hampstead Heath is the perfect place to spend an afternoon with friends and loved ones―and on an unseasonably warm Valentine’s Day, the lawns are especially full. So when an aggressive lovers’ quarrel breaks out, there’s an audience of park goers nearby to hear the shouts traded back and forth, and to watch as the violence escalates suddenly to murder, then suicide. 

For the five strangers who observed the gruesome act, the memory of the gore is unshakable. But one of them―disgraced journalist Jen Hunter―is compelled to question the truth of what she thought she saw. Are the facts of the case plain as day, or were they obscured, in the moment, by the glaring sunlight?

As she mounts an obsessive investigation for a seemingly-impossible alternative, the lives of the other witnesses begin to unravel, each in its own particular way. Soon one thing becomes clear: the crime they witnessed was more terrible, more twisted, and more far-reaching than they ever could have imagined.

Brilliant parallel narratives by Jen and her friend Bex reveal their delusions and obsessions, within an airtight plot worthy of [Agatha] Christie herself. Readers can expect to change their minds about the characters with each chapter, and a stunning conclusion brings it all to a satisfying end. Highly recommended for suspense fans looking for something new and different.

Booklist ⭐ starred review

A gorgeous kaleidoscope of a thriller–where what must be the truth reveals itself instantly, and then shifts and changes and twist until it comes into gasping focus. Brilliantly structured, elegantly written, and completely entertaining, this is the essence of a psychological thriller. Readers, along with the characters, are pulled into believing something, and then something else, and then something else, until we are all holding our breath and turning the pages as fast as we can. Do not miss this! It is original, thought-provoking, and a master class in manipulation. E. V. Adamson is a star.

—Hank Phillippi Ryan, USA Today Bestselling author of Her Perfect Life

An astute and clever thriller that asks a fundamental question: Can we really believe what we see with our own eyes?

—Peter Swanson, author of Every Vow You Break and The Kind Worth Killing

Both a tightly-plotted, entertaining work of suspense and an unflinching study of the trauma of witnessing violence, Five Strangers gripped me from the first shocking chapter.

—Louise Candlish, author of Our House

Meticulously plotted with an ending I really didn’t see coming.

—Sarah Vaughan, author of Anatomy of a Scandal

From its gripping first chapter, reminiscent of Ian McEwan’s Enduring Love, Five Strangers took me on a breathless, twisting ride. So perfectly pitched it gave me vertigo.

—Kate Weinberg, author of The Truants

E. V. Adamson is a pseudonym of award-winning journalist and author Andrew Wilson. He is the author of four acclaimed biographies, including one on Patricia Highsmith, and four Agatha Christie novels, which feature the Queen of Crime as a series sleuth.