I am delighted to share an extract with you today on my stop on Retribution by Christina O’Reilly Blog Tour. which is out now
A young woman has been murdered on Ripton Beach.
DSS ‘Archie’ Baldrick and DC Ben Travers eventually identify the body as that of Lucy Martin, who has been renting a bach in the area. Her husband, Oliver, seems to know very little about his wife or her background.
What was Lucy hiding? Why has she no family or friends?
As the number of suspects mounts up, Archie begins to conclude that the real answer lies in Lucy’s dark and mysterious past, and that the murderer may be just a little too close for comfort …
Notes: The young woman’s body found on Ripton Beach has been identified as that of Lucy Martin. This is a scene from the evening briefing on the day her body was found.
The hall was buzzing when he got there at ten minutes after five. Billy had been quick off the mark; already there was a photo of Lucy Martin up on the board. Archie took a few moments to consider her face, half turned towards the camera. She was smiling, showing slightly crooked lower teeth. Her nose was small and pointed, her cheeks and jawline sharp, like Summer’s had been when she’d lost too much weight. Smooth blonde hair curved under her jawline from a central parting. It was an arresting face but not one that he would have considered beautiful. Then he glanced at the nearby photo of the same young features in colourless death, and immediately changed his mind.
Archie turned around to face the room and silence quickly descended. The numbers had swelled since this morning, but Dev had obviously found more chairs and everyone was seated, their collars and ties loosened against the heat. A large fan whirred ineffectually in the corner of the room.
‘Evening, everyone,’ Archie began. ‘For those who don’t know me, I’m Detective Senior Sergeant Baldrick and I’m running this investigation.’ He turned towards the board. ‘We now have a positive ID for our victim. Her name is Lucy Martin and she was twenty-nine years old. Earlier this afternoon her husband, Oliver Martin, who’s currently in Sydney on business, rang to say that he’d been unable to contact his wife since yesterday afternoon. It appears that Lucy had been renting a bach in Ripton Beach for the last few weeks. Obviously the victim’s husband is very distressed, but he’ll be flying back home tonight and will perform a formal identification of the body. Tomorrow morning he will hopefully be able to give us some more information about why his wife was living here.’ Archie turned back to face the crowded room. ‘Preliminary reports from the pathologist confirm that Lucy was indeed forcibly held under the water until she drowned.’
Author Bio –
Christina is a writer and professional proofreader living in the Waikato region of New Zealand. Four of her short stories have been published, one in a magazine and the others in anthologies produced by Page and Blackmore, Rangitawa Publishing and most recently in Fresh Ink: Voices from Aotearoa, produced by Cloud Ink Press.
As well as being a finalist in the 2020 Ngaio Marsh Awards, Christina’s first crime novel Into the Void was longlisted for the 2019 Michael Gifkins Memorial Prize for an unpublished novel.
Social Media Links – https://www.facebook.com/Christina-OReilly-Author-102419694721372/