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The Sick Rose Paperback – 29 Mar 2012

4.2 out of 5 stars 71 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder Paperbacks (29 Mar. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1444703854
  • ISBN-13: 978-1444703856
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.4 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 299,664 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

It's unusual for a second novel to be even better than the first but Kelly has pulled off that difficult trick. (Literary Review)

'A compelling second novel from masterful storyteller Erin Kelly.' (Good Housekeeping)

'Kelly's first novel, THE POISON TREE, earned her comparisons with Ruth Rendell and on the evidence of this second psychologically complex thriller, the accolade is entirely deserved. Like Rendell, Kelly is an expert in suburban macabre, relishing in the kind of domestic scenes we all recognise but giving them a satisfyingly chilly.' (Psychologies)

Erin Kelly's first thriller, THE POISON TREE, was widely praised, with some reviewers comparing her work to Daphne du Maurier. Her second, THE SICK ROSE, is nearer in spirit to Ruth Rendell's work . . . It's an elaborate narrative structure, but Kelly manages it with panache . . . this is an enormously readable novel and there is no denying Erin Kelly's talent. She's an author to watch. (Spectator)

'This claustrophobic psychological thriller is the second novel from the author of the brilliant THE POISON TREE. Just as good as her debut, it marks Kelly out as a formidable talent' (Bella)

'It is hard to find a more impeccably English writer than Erin Kelly, whose debut THE POISON TREE, marked her as a name to watch in British fiction... In trademark style the [THE SICK ROSE] flits between the 'then' and the 'now', playing with the magic and poison of memories, until the present intervenes with brutal and tragic consequences'. (The Times)

Kelly writes perceptively and chillingly about the long shadows cast by tragic mistakes . . . she shows considerable promise. (Daily Telegraph)

'Thumbs up to . . . this leave-the-light-on thriller.' (Look)

'A tense and twisting novel of dark secrets and dangerous desires.' (Grazia)

Kelly's first novel, THE POISON TREE, earned her comparisons with Ruth Rendell and on the evidence of this second psychologically complex thriller, the accolade is entirely deserved. Like Rendell, Kelly is an expert in suburban macabre, relishing in the kind of domestic scenes we all recognise but giving them a satisfyingly chilly twist. (Psychologies)

Erin Kelly's debut THE POISON TREE was a fine psychological thriller; THE SICK ROSE confirms that promise . . . a first-class suspense novel. (Mail on Sunday)

'After the success of THE POISON TREE, Erin Kelly has conjured up another intriguing novel that will draw you in from the start.' (Star)

'Gripping and beautifully written . . . I can't recommend this book highly enough. I read the last section in one long burst, unaware of my surroundings, and emerged as though from a trance. I think I shall have to read it again.' (www.shotsmag.co.uk)

'A real "can't put it down" mystery. This sick rose has got the grip of bindweed.' (Independent)

A compelling suspense novel from crime fiction's freshest voice. (Red)

'More creepy crime with plenty of psychological insight from rising star Erin Kelly.' **** (Daily Mirror)

'More creepy crime with plenty of psychological insight from rising star Erin Kelly.' **** (Mirror)

'Erin Kelly's first thriller, THE POISON TREE, was widely praised, with some reviewers comparing her work to Daphne du Maurier. Her second, THE SICK ROSE, is nearer in sprit to Ruth Rendell's work . . . It's an elaborate narrative structure, but Kelly manages it with panache . . . this is an enormously readable novel and there is no denying Erin Kelly's talent. She's an author to watch.' (Spectator)

A tantalising novel that grips the gut until the breathtaking conclusion. (Daily Record)

A tense and twisting novel of dark secrets and dangerous desires. (Grazia)

A compelling second novel from masterful storyteller Erin Kelly. (Good Housekeeping)

This claustrophobic psychological thriller is the second novel from the author of the brilliant THE POISON TREE. Just as good as her debut, it marks Kelly out as a formidable talent (Bella)

After the success of THE POISON TREE, Erin Kelly has conjured up another intriguing novel that will draw you in from the start. (Star)

Thumbs up to . . . this leave-the-light-on thriller. (Look)

Gripping and beautifully written... I can't recommend this book highly enough. I read the last section in one long burst, unaware of my surroundings, and emerged as though from a trance. I think I shall have to read it again. (www.shotsmag.co.uk)

This is a page-turning read from a writer who has been compared to Daphne du Maurier and Ruth Rendell. (You Magazine)

An excellent book . . . Erin Kelly has written a well thought out, skilfully executed study of destructive relationships and how the past is always lurking, threatening to contaminate the present and, indeed, the future.... The Sick Rose shows that she is accomplished in interpreting the inner workings of the mind whilst turning it into riveting entertainment; a talent evident in few, envied by many and gratefully enjoyed by the likes of me. (www.thebookbag.co.uk)

This harrowing novel is a work of true talent. (Publishers Weekly, Pick of the Week)

It's a book that's very hard to put down, with each precisely timed turn of the narrative screw increasing the tension to a very assured climax . . . The book delves deep into dark hearts and troubled minds and does so in deft and highly readable fashion. (cornflowerbooks.co.uk)

Disturbing yet compelling. It's from the "I don't care if it's your birthday, we can't go out until I've finished this" school of fiction. The plot grasps and branches like its namesake, with a strong grip on the random coincidences that can both bring people together then blow them apart. Sick or not, once this rose has got its thorns into you, it will be quite some time before you can disentangle yourself. (www.reviewingtheevidence.com)

Book Description

The chilling second novel from the author of the critically acclaimed THE POISON TREE

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Format: Paperback
Which was a little awkward as I found myself on a very crowded tube with 2 large bags unwilling to put this book away despite imminent danger of falling over.

I'm usually addicted to police procedural crime novels so to tackle something more psychological, especially a book as accomplished as this, was a real pleasure.

I think this is a stunning second novel. To me, the places and people were even more authentic than those in the poison tree, the moving between time periods was seamless and utterly compelling.

And the twist at the end got me. Cannot recommend this highly enough.
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Format: Paperback
This is my first novel by this author and I can't wait to read The Poison Tree now. There is a dark, mysterious quality to her writing that pulls you in and makes it hard to put the book down. I completely believed in her main characters Louisa and Paul, and the tragedies that happened to them and brought them together. She writes as convincingly about life on a tough estate as she does about life on the King's Road in London, and I particularly felt for Paul and the way he is stopped from following his dream by people who don't want him to have dreams. Brilliant.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For me, this is the sort of story that you really need to call in some favours, bunk off, shirk your responsiblities... do what it takes to give it your full attention until you've read it from start to finish. Within a couple of pages, everything else (including sleep) was an irrelevance and irritation, getting in the way of finishing the next chapter.. and the next...
A really satisfying read, gorgeously described, and the characters will stay with me for a long time. I can't wait for Erin Kelly's next book.
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Format: Hardcover
I'd read Kelly's first novel The Poison Tree and thoroughly enjoyed it but The Sick Rose is in a different league.
It grips from the start, transporting you back in time to Kensington Market in the 1980s - a vivid, very real portrayal for anyone who remembers the dingy old place.
But it's the characters and storyline that really grip. Sympathetic, yet interesting leads and an engaging, well researched story that slowly but very cleverly winds two very different tales into one. And the ending is utterly unexpected and shocking.
I read it in one go and immediately went online to find out if there was another Erin Kelly novel I'd missed. Sadly there are only two but if she continues to improve at her current rate, I really can't wait for her third book. Surely, given the quality of this one, there must be one on the way.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As a long time fan of psychological thrillers, I am really starting to like Erin Kelly's work. This book charts the relationship between social misfit Louisa and Paul - 20 years her junior and on a work placement with a witness protection scheme where Louisa is working restoring a Tudor garden. We are flicked back into both of their pasts, Louisa's world in 1989 and her love affair with a singer in a band and Paul to his growing up and involvement with petty criminal Daniel.

An enjoyable page turning read. EK excels at the creation of atmospheres and scene setting - the recreation of 1989 London was extremely well done along with life in an Essex estuary town and I actually felt a touch of Ruth Rendell coming on here. In her last book I thought her characters were stereotypical but she has proved me wrong in this one. My type of book and I am certainly looking forward to more.
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By My Chestnut Reading Tree TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 9 July 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Having read and enjoyed Erin Kellys previous novel The Poison Tree i was looking forward to reading this after seeing a review in a Sunday supplement. Thankfully I read it while I was away on holiday so I was able to spend long periods of time with the characters of Louisa and Paul because when you start reading this book you will not want to stop! The story is told in the present day and also with flashbacks to the past of both characters-Louisa as a teenager falling obsessively in love with a wannabe rock star and the more recent problems of Paul and how he gets himself in trouble due to his friend Daniel. This would have got 5 stars but I felt the ending twist was a little bit disappointing and weak.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Initially I wasn't too keen on this book becasue I felt it was a bit slow to get started and I became impatient. However, I stuck with it and I'm glad I did because by the end I was hooked. Erin Kelly does an excellent job of showing how the lives of 2 people from very different backgrounds both unravel in different ways, leading them to the same place. It makes you think how thin the line is between success and failure; a life well lived or a life of crime and deprivation.

I loved the twists and turns of the plot towards the end and the book ends with the tying up of the one remaining loose end - a billiant touch.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I could not put this book down! i nearly didn't buy this book, mostly because i wasn't very enamoured with The Poison Tree, but I am so glad I did. It is so much better than her first novel and emanates Ruth Rendell when she was at her best. The ending was unexpected, with twists along the way. I would definitely recommend reading this if you are a fan of Ruth Rendell's earlier work. I shall definitely be buying the next book by Erin Kelly.
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