I’m delighted to be taking part in the Bookouture Books On Tour event for the amazing Casey Kelleher’s latest novel, No Escape. Thanks to the publisher and the author for the ARC.
Before I share my thoughts, here’s what the official blurb says:
The one place she never wanted to go back to. The one place she can’t escape.
When she was just five years old, Lucy Murphy witnessed her mother’s brutal murder in their home on London’s notorious Griffin Estate. The case was never solved. Now a newly qualified police officer, Lucy has been given her first job: she’s going back to the Griffin Estate.
She is there to protect the estate’s vulnerable residents, including Shannon and Kian Winters, two kids struggling to deal with their alcoholic mother. Fifteen-year-old Shannon is working every spare hour to keep a roof over their heads, but thirteen-year-old Kian has fallen under the sway of gang leader Jax Priestly. And now Jax has plans for Shannon too…
As Lucy gets to know Kian and Shannon she becomes determined not to let the two teenagers become Jax’s victims. But time is running out. Jax is out of control, and the gang’s violent reprisals are escalating. Can Lucy face down her own demons in time to prevent a tragedy? As a child, she already witnessed the murder of one innocent person. It will take all her courage and training to stop another.
With a show stopping prologue like that I knew there was no chance of an early night for me! Talk about pushing all my buttons and more! With no spoilers, as it’s in the blurb, we have our first introduction to Lucy Murphy in a heart wrenching prologue and I just sat back and watched as Casey Kelleher delivered that all important killer hook moment that dragged me screaming into the pages!
No Escape has it all, it’s gritty, it wraps its fingers around your heart pulling at all the emotions, it’s authentic, this is the life for many people across our country and Casey Kelleher pulls no punches when telling the story of the lives of those who live on the estate; the characters will engage you, as the first in (what I hope is a long series) this is like being welcomed into a new home or family as you settle yourself down in this new environment and watch the faces around you, watching and learning.
No Escape is a nail biting police procedural meets grit-lit meets soap opera exhilarating kind of read. Introducing the reader to a whole host of characters, some of whom will earn a well-deserved place in your heart to others whom you will wish all depths of hell on and their lives will rip your heart into little shreds. Shannon and Kian are the kids of alcoholic and drug addict, Michelle Winters and their story will rip your heart apart as from the very outset it becomes clear that Shannon is taking on the role her mother is unable to play. Yet it isn’t hard not to feel sorry for Michelle, this novel forces you to look beyond the poverty porn headlines and think a little bit about what drives people to dark places where they find it hard to escape from.
The cuckooing scenes were the most disturbing scenes to read, I’m not going to say much but oh my god, I might have ugly cried!
I loved Lucy Murphy’s character, with her own issues to deal with in her personal life, this new role as a detective is not going to be an easy one for her and the resentment from some of her male colleagues was all too realistic. With such a dramatic backstory to be explored this was a perfect introduction to Casey Kelleher’s latest character.
Highly topical and most definitely socially relevant it explores county lines, cuckooing and the very real experience of life on the periphery of society. It made me angry, it made me cry and made me smile too. But it definitely left me waiting eagerly for more from life on the estate and DC Lucy Murphy’s life.
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No Escape is available to purchase from
About the author
Born in Cuckfield, West Sussex, Casey Kelleher grew up as an avid reader and a huge fan of author Martina Cole.
Whilst working as a beauty therapist and bringing up her three children together with her husband, Casey penned her debut novel Rotten to the Core. Its success meant that she could give up her day job and concentrate on writing full time.
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