La Plante has achieved considerable success with a canny balancing act between genres. Initially, her thrillers may appear to be simple, non-reflective blockbusters with strong women characters, but she is a far more subtle writer than this might initially suggest. It takes real skill to produce popular writing as sophisticated as this, however pungent the narratives might seem. The central character in Sleeping Cruelty
represents a departure for her. Sir William Benedict is enjoying all the glittering prizes that his wealth and position have granted him. Relishing his reputation as a self-made man (with his own island in the Caribbean), he is particularly keen that his political protégé Andrew Maynard should succeed, and he has been bankrolling Maynard's campaign heavily. But Maynard, who was gay, commits suicide, and Benedict soon finds his reputation falling apart as swiftly as his ordered world. The hellish existence he finds himself in is rendered even more painful by the people who were closest to him. But Benedict is marshalling his forces, and begins to dream of an uncompromising revenge.
In such books as The Legacy, Bella Mafia and Cold Blood, La Plante demonstrated a sure grasp in her delineation of larger-than-life characters. But she has replaced her powerful female protagonists with a richly drawn anti-hero in Benedict. The details of his lifestyle and the cold-blooded betrayals by his nearest and dearest are handled in the usual confident fashion, but it's the characterisation of Benedict that really grips the attention. Initial fears that that he may be a broadly-drawn, one-dimensional creation are quickly allayed, and the reader is cast adrift when La Plante pulls off her principal coup: thoroughly involving us in Benedict's highly dubious activities. --Barry Forshaw
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Lynda La Plante bestowed John Moores University with a creative writing scholarship in her hometown of Liverpool and is an honorary member of the British Film Institute. The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) has also awarded Lynda with the Dennis Potter Writers Award. She was awarded a CBE in the 2008 Queen's Birthday Honours List (for services to Literature, Drama and to Charity), and was presented with the prestigious TV Spielfilm Award for her television adaptation of her novel Above Suspicion at the International Film and Television Festival Conference in Cologne. In 2009 Lynda was inducted into the Crime Thriller Awards Hall of Fame . Her novels have all been international bestsellers.