On 7 November 1974, a nanny named Sandra Rivett was bludgeoned to death in a Belgravia basement. A second woman, Veronica, Countess of Lucan, was also attacked. The man named in court as perpetrator of these crimes, Richard John Bingham, 7th Earl of Lucan, disappeared in the early hours of the following morning. The case, solved in the eyes of the law, has retained its fascination ever since.
Laura Thompson narrates the story that led up to that cataclysmic event and reexamines the possible truths behind one of postwar Britain’s most notorious murders.
"Gripping...an exceptionally thorough examination." (Daily Mail)
"Sensational...the most minutely researched and brilliantly told account ever." (Mail on Sunday)
"Tantalises with fresh evidence." (The Daily Telegraph)
"A compelling new examination of the crime and a brilliant detective mind...fascinating.... Thompson gives us a tantalising range of alternative scenarios in this superb anatomy of a murder." (Independent)
"This gripping read is part social history, part detective story...fascinating." (Bella)
"Thompson delivers the goods: a compelling narrative, hypotheses based on evidence and a possible solution. But she goes further, putting the murder in the telling context of British aristocracy and social attitudes towards it." (The Times)
"Thompson is a fine writer and one can't help admiring the way she breathes new life into an intriguing tale." (Literary Review)
"[Laura Thompson] gets her teeth into the case, drawing on Lucan's friends the Shand-Kydds, finding a new source in an anonymous Lucan schoolfriend, and finally producing a narrative which is sympathetic to Lucan, but less so to his wife." (Times Literary Supplement)
"Thompson re-examines a tantalizingly ambiguous crime, delving deep into a complicated story and emerging with a gripping narrative that offers a fresh perspective and new solutions to one of the most infamous cases of the 20th century." (Good Book Guide)
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First part slow, second part gripping