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Magpie Lane Reviews

Magpie Lane by Lucy Atkins

Magpie Lane

Lucy Atkins

Score pending

2 reviews

Imprint: Quercus Publishing
Publisher: Quercus Publishing
Publication date: 2 Apr 2020
ISBN: 9781786485571

Roaming through Oxford's secret passages and hidden graveyards, Magpie Lane explores the true meaning of family - and what it is to be denied one.

4 stars out of 5
30 May 2020

"a pleasure to read and highly recommended"

Highly strung and selectively mute since her mother’s death, Felicity is the daughter of Nick, the new master of an Oxford college and a former TV executive, now married to Mariah, a Scandinavian more interested in wallpaper than her stepdaughter — according to Dee’s version of events. But how negligent are these trendies really? Dee is, if not lying, sparing in what she discloses. Is there really a supernatural element to the priest hole in the attic? And how did she lose her own child? This turns out to be more of a love story that happens to contain a crime, but it’s a pleasure to read and highly recommended.

Reviews

4 stars out of 5
Mark Sanderson
21 Mar 2020

"the result is creepy and compelling"

The alarm bells start ringing from the off as middle-aged nanny Dee, an Oxford mathematics drop-out, is questioned by a couple of coppers — in the absence of a solicitor — about the disappearance of her charge, eight-year-old Felicity, a changeling with selective mutism...

Atkins scathingly portrays Oxford as “a place of dust motes, vaults and arm-span alleys”, full of ghosts and grotesques. Apart from a gratuitous swipe at Colin Dexter – whose novels featuring Inspector Morse involve plots far more complicated than the “did she or didn’t she?” of Magpie Lane — the result is creepy and compelling.