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Lying in Wait Paperback – 26 Dec 2016

4.4 out of 5 stars 125 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin (26 Dec. 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0241974062
  • ISBN-13: 978-0241974063
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (125 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 455 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


"My husband did not mean to kill Annie Doyle, but the lying tramp deserved it." ... Lydia Fitzsimons lives in the perfect house with her adoring husband and beloved son. There is just one thing Lydia yearns for to make her perfect life complete, though the last thing she expects is that pursuing it will lead to murder . . . (From the Publisher's Description)

Gone Girl fans will love Liz Nugent's Lying in Wait ... it twists, it turns, its characters are utterly despicable and it is a compulsive triumph (Stylist)

A stunningly talented writer (Sophie Hannah)

A tense, taut, almost gothic thriller where the tension tightens to near unbearable proportions. I devoured it in one sitting because it was impossible to stop reading. A brilliantly written, stand-out novel (Marian Keyes)

Deliciously twisted, shot through with dark and acid humour and the denouement is truly chilling (Sarah Hilary)

A gradual descent from ordinary, straightforward murder to the very heart of darkness. Liz Nugent's characters are as unforgettably monstrous as they are believable ... superbly crafted (Jane Casey)

She keeps the reader on the edge of their seat from page one until the completely unexpected ending. I read Lying in Wait in one sitting. I just couldn't bear the suspense. I absolutely loved it (Amanda Redman)

About the Author

Before becoming a full-time writer Liz Nugent worked in Irish film, theatre and television. In 2014 her first novel, Unravelling Oliver, was a No.1 bestseller and won the Crime Fiction prize in the 2014 Irish Book Awards. Her second novel, Lying in Wait, went straight to No 1 in the Irish bestseller charts, remained there for nearly two months and won her a second IBA. She lives in Dublin with her husband.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
There haven't been many books this year which I could say were beyond brilliant from start to finish and would feature in my books of the year come the end of December. Three or four at a push so far and it's not because I am fussy, yes I have read some great books this year but for me to give five stars or to think it could be a favourite for the year the book truly has to be extraordinary but thankfully I have found another one. Lying in Wait the second book from Liz Nugent is just amazing I still can't get it out of my head. I lay in bed the night after finishing the book and couldn't sleep so much was running through my head concerning the storyline. I had heard nothing but good things about this book and normally when this is the case and I go on to read said book I am left disappointed and wondering did I read a different book from everyone else? That's happened to me quite a bit this year but Lying in Wait deserves every bit of praise heaped upon it and it went way beyond my expectations. The quote on the cover from Sophie Hannah says 'a stunningly talented writer' and Liz certainly is and has confirmed it with a read that will get deep inside your head and leave you breathless as you race through the pages peeling back the many layers to this story.

I don't normally read crime/thriller books bar a few Scandinavian crime writers but everyone seemed to be obsessing over this book so I had to give it a try and I was so glad I did. I spent a few hours lost in the twisted, claustrophobic world of Lydia and Laurence and was left open mouthed at several points throughout. Lying in Wait was a tour de force that took me on a journey into the lives and minds of each of the characters and didn't relinquish its grip until the very last page where even then a surprise was thrown in.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The opening line of Liz Nugent's latest novel "My husband did not mean to kill Annie Doyle but the lying tramp deserved it" is hard to beat and immediately hooks the reader. To my mind Nugent's first book Unravelling Oliver, was an exceptionally well-executed thriller and I looked forward to her second effort and was certainly not disappointed although I have a personal preference for the superbly crafted Unravelling Olive.r

Lying in Wait is an utterly gripping and very dark tale full of twists and turns and peopled by some very tortured souls. The bare bones of the plot are as follows: Andrew Fitzsimons, a judge, meets with Annie Doyle one night in late November 1980 and, as a result of this meeting, Annie Doyle ends up dead. Andrew and his wife Lydia together cover up the death. While Andrew begins to fall apart with guilt, Lydia remains strong and is determined that family life goes on as usual for the sake of their son Laurence. The story is narrated by Lydia, Laurence and by Annie's sister Karen who is determined to find her missing sister. The use of these three narrators works very well and allows the reader to watch the story develop from different perspectives and feel the tension mount as the plot builds and old secrets are revealed.

Liz Nugent is adept at creating very compelling characters and I think it is safe to say I will not be giving anything away when I say that
Lydia is a truly monstrous self-regarding, manipulative and cunning person. She appears to suffer from severe agoraphobia and is without doubt a sociopath. Her cloying dependence on her son Laurence makes for difficult reading at times and she is truly a catalyst for evil.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Even before opening the book, Lying in Wait had me intrigued. The jacket cover has a dark and Gothic feel to it and the greys suggested to me that there would be no clear cut black and white presentation in the plot, themes and characters. I was right. The title gives us the hint – there is both physically awaiting and ambushing in Lying in Wait as well as so many characters behaving mendaciously to themselves and others. This is psychological writing at its finest.

From the dramatic opening line to the bleak final sentence Liz Nugent’s plot had me gripped. The events reminded me of one of those fairground halls of mirrors from my childhood where nothing is quite what it seems. Elements shift, distort and fragment with just a word or phrase so that the reader’s perspective alters frequently until they are almost being lied to by the first person narrators as much as the characters are in the story. Small, seemingly throwaway, lines are slipped subtly into the story and I found myself thinking, ‘Hang on. What did they just say?’ or, ‘No! Don’t do that. Don’t say that.’ and my stomach did a little flip with my pulse increasing. The chapter endings are incredible and even if Lying in Wait wasn’t already completely enthralling, those alone would compel any reader to read on.

Narrated in a conversational first person tone from the three perspectives of Lydia, Laurence and Karen, each has a distinct voice that reveals snippets of information. There is an underlying malevolence so that in the end I wasn’t sure at all how I felt about Lydia. I couldn’t decide if she was evil, insane or merely a damaged product of her past who deserved some sympathy. Indeed, I found all the characters made me think hard and change my opinions frequently.
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