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Mapping The Edge [Kindle Edition]

Sarah Dunant
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £5.99
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Book Description

Anna packs her bags one day without telling anyone where and why she is going - just that she'll be back soon. Her thoughts as she boards a plane, are that this journey will give her time to think about her life - as a woman hitting forty, a journalist and a single mother. She has no premonition that she will become a statistic in a missing person file. Left at home is Anna's beloved six-year-old daughter Lily, her gay friend Paul, who is surrogate father to Lily, and her eccentric best friend Estella. When Anna doesn't return, they make uneasy excuses until, as time passes, the mind-numbing possibility that Anna might not be coming back becomes terrifyingly real. And while those closest to her battle with their imaginations, Anna is on a dark journey - in one scenario Anna is on a ravishing, sexual adventure, on the other, much darker voyage, she is the victim of a stranger's dangerous sexual fantasy. In a masterpiece of emotionally intelligent and nerve-wracking suspense, Sarah Dunant takes us to the very edge.

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Product Description

Amazon.co.uk Review

Journalist Anna goes missing on a trip to Italy, and all her friends and child, Lily, can do is worry, and imagine. Stella rushes back to England from Holland to help Paul look after young Lily and the pair of them have to come to terms with what Anna's permanent loss would mean.

Dunant writes well about the new tensions implicit in new sorts of family and new ways of life; Stella's free life with a semi-detached lover, Paul's relationship with the younger Mike--can these survive having to bring up a child? And what has happened to Anna? Dunant plays games and tells us two very different thrilling stories of Anna's absence. Is Anna perhaps the victim of a drugged drink, and abduction, and is locked in a remote house, a woman in Gothic danger? Or is she caught up in a more modern fantasy--off having raunchy sex with a charming but unsatisfactory lover who talks to her about art and takes her to look at rare paintings? This is an intense book, all the more effective for its every element being provisional; Dunant uses thriller elements to invigorate a novel of loss and risk. --Roz Kaveney

Amazon Review

Journalist Anna goes missing on a trip to Italy, and all her friends and child, Lily, can do is worry, and imagine. Stella rushes back to England from Holland to help Paul look after young Lily and the pair of them have to come to terms with what Anna's permanent loss would mean.

Dunant writes well about the new tensions implicit in new sorts of family and new ways of life; Stella's free life with a semi-detached lover, Paul's relationship with the younger Mike--can these survive having to bring up a child? And what has happened to Anna? Dunant plays games and tells us two very different thrilling stories of Anna's absence. Is Anna perhaps the victim of a drugged drink, and abduction, and is locked in a remote house, a woman in Gothic danger? Or is she caught up in a more modern fantasy--off having raunchy sex with a charming but unsatisfactory lover who talks to her about art and takes her to look at rare paintings? This is an intense book, all the more effective for its every element being provisional; Dunant uses thriller elements to invigorate a novel of loss and risk. --Roz Kaveney


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unexpectedly enjoyable read! 6 July 2003
By sunnylanes VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback
I read this book with a purpose as I will be attending a 'reader's day' with the author and had been allocated this book. I would never have picked it up in a million years as it didn't seem like 'my sort of read'. How wrong can you be! Sarah Dunant creates a masterfully interwoven plot with her two story lines about the disappearance of Anna , was it choice or 'did someone do the choosing for her'.The edge is right because I was on the edge of my seat reading this, and trying to figure out just how it was going to end and how was Dunant going to weave it all back together in the final chapter. She does of course and I closed the book feeling as if this had been a very gratifying reading experience and also telling myself not to be so limited and superficially judgemental in what I choose to read in future!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Gripping Tale 6 Sept. 2005
Format:Paperback
I picked up this book whilst on holiday, and finished it within 3 days.
Mapping The Edge is a truly gripping tale of the two possible scenarios in which the main character is involved. But which one? In both, Alice is prevented from returning home after a short break in Italy. Both are highly believable, but quite different, although the two situations gradually seem to become interwoven, sharing crucial events,and eventually the more originally sinister story becomes the one we can empathise with, whilst what begins as a seemingly uncomplicated affair driven by mutial desires becomes increasingly menacing. Running through the story is the background of the main characters' daughter,6 year old Lily,and her perception of her abandonment by her mother, as well as the concerns of Alices friends, Stella and Paul, who are responsible for Lily in her ever more lengthy absence. This book draws you in and pulls you with ever increasing speed towards its satisfyingly apt conclusion. A great book, and I shall be reading more from Sarah Dunant.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
Ms. Dunant delivers two different versions of the plot. What happens to Anna Franklin? She is thirty-nine, very attractive, "pretty was always too tame a word," a single mother and journalist, who goes for a short vacation to Italy, leaving her six-year-old daughter with friends in London. When she does not return, her friends are justifiably alarmed, but knowing Anna's reliability they invent rational reasons for her continued absence - until it becomes apparent that she may never return.
The two different accounts of Anna's adventures are cleverly interwoven with the narrative of what occurs at home with the daughter and friends who wait, as we wait, to discover just what is going on. The author also takes us on a journey into Anna's past to further develop her character. This chilling novel promises answers but never really delivers. Ms. Dunant's writing is taut and suspenseful. She is a three time finalist for the Golden Dagger Award. This is a novel you won't be able to put down - an engrossing read!
JANA
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bedtime readers, beware -- but it's worth it! 21 April 2001
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Anna Franklin's "strategy for revitalization" involves an impulsive trip to Florence, Italy where she expects to rendezvous with her recently acquired part-time lover. Anna goes missing, and back home in London, those closest to her -- Paul, loyal friend and surrogate father to Anna's daughter Lily, aged six, and Estella, her long-time best friend -- are becoming increasingly anxious, worried -- and puzzled. "Mapping the Edge" is both a suspense story and a study of relationships. As a suspense story, the author borrows a premise used so effectively in some of Hitchcock's films: The innocent caught in the web of the villain's machinations; the dupe ensnared by the duper. On another level, the book explores relationships: between women and men, women and women, men and men, adults and children, the victim and the victimizer. Author Dunant accomplishes all this by filling the reader's plate with a clever device: two scenarios of what might have happened to Anna. In this author's hands, it is done skillfully and entertainingly, and the resolutions are plausible. If you're a bedtime reader, expect a late night when the engaging mixture of a suspenseful plot and intriguing characters seduces you.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Confusing 5 Nov. 2007
Format:Paperback
Although I will have to admit to not fully understanding therefore being confused by this story, it did not spoil my enjoyment of the novel.
The story is divided into three sections. Anna has not returned home as expected from a trip to Italy and her daughter Lily is being cared for by friends including Estella the narrator. The suspense is intensified by Estella's description of the household's reaction to Anna's disappearance. It was the other two scenarios that I found confusing, was she with her lover as planned or was she the victim of kidnap. This will certainly keep you guessing.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A page turner 20 Mar. 2002
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Mapping The Edge was a very enjoyable read, especially when the second dimension of mystery came into it. Although it is not the sort of book that will stay with me for a long time, I looked forward to picking it up whenever here was an opportunity. The effect of Anna's disappearance was sensitively dealt with regarding the child, Lily, but the other characters, Stella and Paul, were a bit thinly drawn and, to my mind, not terribly well dramatised. Once the narrative moved to Italy in the 'Away' sequences the novel really came to life, and the suspense held out until the end. I must admit feeling a little let down by the ending, but I won't spoil the plot for future readers. Nevertheless it was a very enjoyable read, and better than Transgressions, although I enjoyed reading that at the time.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
not her best book, but please read the historical ones.
Published 2 months ago by Graham Brown
4.0 out of 5 stars Edgy, imaginative story from a mistress of fiction
Every Sarah Dunant novel is a delight. 'Mapping the Edge' is original, surprising, and gripping, a page-turner demanding that you keep up with its twists and turns. Read more
Published 13 months ago by J. Scott-mandeville
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
A modern thriller, set it Italy. It becomes increasing convincing as the story goes on. The device of three separate stands of concurrent narration worked well. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Ruth Book
2.0 out of 5 stars Dull
Dull. Just dull. I read a few pages, flicked on to see if it improved, then put it in the bag for the poor dogs
Published 19 months ago by Adanaya
5.0 out of 5 stars "Our first encounter and I'm still alive."
When Estella finds that her friend Anna has suddenly disappeared, leaving her daughter, eight year old Lily, in the care of Paul, a loving though surrogate father, and his... Read more
Published on 7 May 2013 by Eileen Shaw
2.0 out of 5 stars Mixed reaction
Whilst I enjoyed the writing and the story, the last page, no, the last 3 lines, totally confused me. Read more
Published on 2 April 2010 by AT
3.0 out of 5 stars Easy read with some tension
As a night time reader it was easy. However one thread of the plot was scary and was not conducive to sleep. Read more
Published on 1 Jan. 2009 by Ruth
3.0 out of 5 stars Take it or leave it
I have just finished reading this and I am left feeling "is that it?"

The protagonist, Anna, has disappeared off to Italy without telling anyone where or why (leaving... Read more
Published on 4 Aug. 2008 by Boof
4.0 out of 5 stars A story that takes you right to the edge.,
Dunant is a real pro, subtly using every trick in the book to create a psychological novel of intense suspense, a novel that succeeds beautifully in keeping the reader involved, on... Read more
Published on 3 Oct. 2005 by Mary Whipple
5.0 out of 5 stars Page-turning mystery
A slow-burner, this one, but once the mystery has a chance to grow, it's a page-turning read. I couldn't put it down. Read more
Published on 14 Aug. 2005
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