Today I am delighted to be on the blog tour for Cast Iron by the fabulous Peter May, who is one of my favourite authors. Thank you to Alainna Georgiou and River Run books for giving me the opportunity to be on this tour.
I have a special extract to share with you, but first here is a little bit about the book.
THE GIRL IN THE LAKE
In 1989, a killer dumped the body of twenty-year-old Lucie Martin into a picturesque lake in the West of France. Fourteen years later, during a summer heatwave, a drought exposed her remains.
THE MAN ON THE CASE
No one was ever convicted of her murder. But now, forensic expert Enzo Macleod is reviewing this stone-cold case – the toughest of those he has been challenged to solve.
THE SKELETON IN THE CLOSET
Yet when Enzo finds a flaw in the original evidence surrounding Lucie’s murder, he opens a Pandora’s box that not only raises old ghosts but endangers his entire family.
LOT-ET-GARONNE, FRANCE, 2003
The cool air that came with the night was dissipating along with the early morning mist. Already he could feel the heat rising up through the earth, and soon the sky would be a burned-out dusty white. Like yesterday, and the day before, and the day before that. He had read in La Dépêche that the death toll was climbing, the elderly worst affected by temperatures now soaring into the mid-forties. Eleven thousand and mounting. This summer heatwave had scorched the earth, killing trees and bushes, burning leaves brittle and brown to tumble like autumn in August.
It was some months since he had come down to the lake, a primal need to sit in solitary silence with a line in the water, caring not in the least whether the fish would bite – though they usually did. His baby boy was just two days old, and both he and his mother were still in the hospital after a difficult birth.
He glanced west across a shimmering landscape, seeing the undulations of burned fields and the skeletons of trees beyond, to where the caves in these chalk hills once provided refuge for resistance fighters when the German occupiers came looking for them.
The slope here was steep, fallen leaves crackling beneath his feet as he made his way through the trees. And then he saw it, shocked for a moment, and stopped. The lake simmered a chemical green in light already thick with heat, and was half or less its usual size. He stepped through dry, breaking undergrowth to his habitual spot, and saw that the water was four metres down, perhaps more. From here, he walked out on to cracked sloping mud, where his line had once snagged
fish, and gazed down at the water below.
All the streams that ran into the lake had long since dried to a trickle, but the farmers, with more need of water than ever, had continued to draw on it, sucking it dry. Unless this canicule broke soon, there would be nothing of it left. And he wondered if the fish it supported would last the summer.
He started tracking west around the perimeter, a great swathe of exposed lake bed, parched and brown, cut deep into the land like a scar. All manner of detritus was exposed, both natural and man-made. The carcasses of long-dead trees. The skeleton of a pram.
In all the scorched mud and desiccated slime, a flash of blue caught his eye. Pale and bleached by water and sun, just above the new waterline. He stumbled over uneven ground, drawn by the incongruous flash of colour in all this withered landscape. There were streaks of white in the baked mud around it, and he saw that it was a blue plastic bag. Only half of it was visible, the rest of it set solid in the mud.
He laid his rod and his bag on the ground and crouched down beside it, curious. There was something inside. The plastic was brittle with age and tore easily beneath his fingers, and he found himself looking down into the black sockets of a skull that had once held eyes. Long, yellowed teeth were exposed in a ghastly grimace, grinning out at him as if amused by his shock. He recoiled at once, and sat down heavily. And
it was only then he realised that those white streaks set into
the dry lake bed around him were the remaining bones of a
About The Author:
Peter May’s books have sold several million copies worldwide and have won awards in the UK, the USA, and France.
He is the author of:
– the internationally best-selling Lewis Trilogy set in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland
– the China Thrillers, featuring Beijing detective Li Yan and American forensic pathologist Margaret Campbell
– the critically-acclaimed Enzo Files, featuring Scottish forensic scientist Enzo MacLeod, which is set in France
– several standalone novels including the multi award-winning Entry Island, Runaway, and his latest, entitled Coffin Road, which see a return to the Outer Hebrides (January 2016, Quercus UK).
He has also had a successful career as a television writer, creator, and producer.
One of Scotland’s most prolific and successful television dramatists, he garnered more than 1000 credits in 15 years as scriptwriter and script editor on prime-time British television drama.
He is the creator of three major television drama series and presided over two of the highest-rated drama serials in his homeland before quitting television to return to his first love, writing novels.
Born and raised in Scotland he lives in France.
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