By: Gilly MacMillan
Publisher: William Morrow
Publication Date: 9/18/2018
My Rating: 5 Stars +++ Top Books of 2018 From New York Times bestselling author Gilly Macmillan comes this original, chilling and twisty mystery about two shocking murder cases twenty years apart, and the threads that bind them. Twenty years ago, eleven-year-olds Charlie Paige and Scott Ashby were murdered in the city of Bristol, their bodies dumped near a dog racing track. A man was convicted of the brutal crime, but decades later, questions still linger. For his whole life, filmmaker Cody Swift has been haunted by the deaths of his childhood best friends. The loose ends of the police investigation consume him so much that he decides to return to Bristol in search of answers. Hoping to uncover new evidence, and to encourage those who may be keeping long-buried secrets to speak up, Cody starts a podcast to record his findings. But there are many people who don’t want the case—along with old wounds—reopened so many years after the tragedy, especially Charlie’s mother, Jess, who decides to take matters into her own hands.
When a long-dead body is found in the same location the boys were left decades before, the disturbing discovery launches another murder investigation. Now Detective John Fletcher, the investigator on the original case, must reopen his dusty files and decide if the two murders are linked. With his career at risk, the clock is ticking and lives are in jeopardy…
“A brilliantly clever ending caps this riveting thriller. Macmillan remains a writer to watch.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
I KNOW YOU KNOW Gilly Macmillan
The talented and internationally bestselling author, Gilly Macmillan returns following Odd Child Out (Jim Clemo #2) with an unputdownable multi-layered standalone thriller with a “killer” plot twist– I KNOW YOU KNOW. 5 Stars ++ + Absolutely love this book and the cover!
A true-crime podcast stirs up new evidence in a decades-old murder with an explosive ending you will not see coming! For fans of unsolved mysteries and the popular podcast, Serial as well as Harlan Coben’s The Five (a favorite). True crime buffs will devour!
For the true crime devotee, there are twenty different kinds of true-crime podcasts: episodic, serialized, cold cases, current events, historical, and thematic. Some of these are similar, to Serial and S-Town and some are wildly different, both in topic and method, but they are all the kind of true crime podcast that will leave you questioning the human psyche, social relationships, and the legal system.
I KNOW YOU KNOW is a perfect example and will feed your true crime obsession. A twenty year old cold case. Read it, and you will find out why! In part, due to the author’s brilliant and clever crime writing. Her best yet!
MacMillian skillfully maximizes suspense by juggling narrators and the timing of the two cases, as well as using the podcast episodes and distinct voices to connect past with the present to the shocking final twists.
Set in Bristol, England an estate at night near an old Greyhound racing dog track. Who doesn’t love Greyhounds! (Some of my friends have adopted the retired Greyhounds).
A group of friends at play. Kids are always at the wrong place at the wrong time.
From a decades-old brutal murder of two young boys, abandoned on wasteland. Still a mystery years later. Now an award-winning filmmaker Cody Swift, haunted by the murder of his two best friends, returns to Bristol to find out what really happened.
Scott Ashby (age 11) and Charlie Paige (age 10) were beaten to death in Bristol, England in 1996. Sidney Noyce- a mentally challenged adult, was charged with the murder. He spent time with the boys at the dog track kennels on the morning before Scott and Charlie disappeared.
He was a 24 yr. old man at the time with the mental age of a 10 yr. old boy. A boy in a man’s body. No prior criminal record. He was likable by many. The gentle giant. Did he receive a fair trial?
In 2017, he commits suicide in prison, after twenty years. He was serving a life sentence. However, he never stopped proclaiming his innocence. Was there something more sinister going on behind the scenes?
Cody begins a Podcast (Dishlicker Podcast) entitled, “It’s Time To Tell.” You see, not everyone believes Sidney Noyce was guilty. Was he a sitting duck? There were also the detectives and the parents.
Who to believe? Everyone is hiding secrets. Many pieces to the puzzle. A complex chain of events. The thought of Noyce being innocent intrigued Cody.
He begins a personal investigation into the murders of his best friends. He starts from the beginning with “It’s Time to Tell” Episode I – Three Deaths and an Article and ends with Episode 11 – Wrong Time, Wrong Place. He has a knack for storytelling.
But there is still more to the story after the final episode.
How would you feel if things changed twenty years later, to have it unearthed once again. This opens up emotions and conflicted feelings.
From the loss of his friends and his guilt that he survived is a darkness he has lived with. Digging up the past will not be easy, but if the reporter is correct that Noyce did not kill his friends, then someone needs to solve this mystery. Who really committed the murders?
For those still remembering and struggling with the darkness – It’s time to tell.
Charlie was still alive when he was found and the last word he said was “ghost”. What did it mean?
However, there are some who do not want this double murder investigation stirred up again. One being Jessica (Jess) Paige, Charlie’s mother (loads of doubt here) and suspicions, who turns to wealthy Felix Abernathy (he has always done favors for those people who need those favors to remain a secret) - to try and stop Cody’s probing. He became very useful to some very influential people in Bristol. What are his secrets and motives?
Jess has married since the murder of Nick. Jess has hidden the past from her daughter, Erica. “Cody Swift has lit a stick of dynamite that could blow everything in her life to smithereens. She knows already that his podcast could be a new and dark dawn in her life.”
Lots of hidden dark secrets. But, why?
Throw also into the mix: Detective Supt. Howard Smail, whose career was ended by the case and D.I. John Fletcher, who originally built the case against Sidney. What about the powerful man, Felix —What is he hiding?
After the violence of Cody’s best friends’ murders, his home and community have never felt the same again. The brutality of the crime that ripped everything apart. Cody was the third boy in the friendship group who got away. How could this have happened?
However, some want to keep the truth buried. If Sidney Noyce was innocent, then someone else is guilty.
As Cody Swift digs deeper and his podcast episodes began to unravel the real truths—some are in great danger if certain facts come out. There is also Owen Weston, the crime reporter who mounted a crusade to convince others that Sidney Noyce was innocent.
What really happened that night? Then another missing person is found dead? Do the two cases connect?
Wow, this one will be on my Top Books of 2018. Well-researched, a master of suspense, connecting past with the present, I KNOW YOU KNOW a supercharged, complex, multilayered crime page-turner thriller, heavy on character development, cop procedural, and psychological suspense. Highly entertaining.
Well done and bloody good! Highly topical— A taut, gripping novel about the deadly secrets of the past. A real crime podcast is at the heart of I KNOW YOU KNOW. The author takes us through the complicated lives of children to adulthood. Mistakes, regrets, betrayals, deceit, fears, secrets.
Through the podcast episodes, we see a wealth of emotions, even being years after the crime. Many different tales, opening old wounds from the past which are threatening to their lives today. From the victim’s mother, Jess, Cody, and even the detectives, among others.
Each character is dynamite in their own ways; however, I thought Cody and especially Jess’s characters were quite intriguing looking back from past to present. Highly relatable characters.
Readers will find an exploration into Jess’s history from a scared young mother, a dark past she would like to keep buried to keep from ruining her current life, yet she possesses the reliance and strength to go up against the worst of enemies. Jess was my favorite character. She will keep you guessing.
I KNOW YOU KNOW is sure to appeal to fans of true crime and especially Harlan Coben, Linwood Barclay, Mary Kubica, Shari Lapena, and Michael Robotham (my favorites). Readers of Charlie Donlea’s Don’t Believe It will enjoy the podcast episodes and interviews of the victims’ families, the cops, and those affected by the tragedy, as well as those who are guarding their secrets of the past.
I loved the hot air balloons (my former hometown held an annual balloon rally), and loved the hashtag #awaitthedate. Our dog race track here in West Palm Beach, FL is located across from the Palm Beach International Airport. Not sure I will ever ride by again without thinking of this story.
On a side note: Hazel Collins (the person who made the report and character in the book). Ironically, I have an aunt named Hazel Collins Lail my favorite – now age 90 in a nursing home in NC with Alzheimer's and a stroke victim. Each time I read her name, thought of her. I also have a cousin Anabelle (Ann) Collins, deceased. For more than 15 years Hazel has been in a home has no clue of any of her family or where she is. She was placed in hospice 20 yrs. ago to die and they had to move her out to a nursing home. She keeps on ticking. Would love to know her secrets.
Speaking of juicy secrets – to enhance your reading experience, highly recommend reading listening to these interviews with Gilly: I thoroughly enjoyed
In her interview you will learn many interesting facts about I KNOW YOU KNOW. I really enjoyed how she created: ‘Dishlicker’ is a slang word for ‘greyhound’ which is why Cody chose the name for his production company. The location of the murders was real and fascinated Macmillian is a true-crime podcast addict and this was her most complicated book to plot to date. (and the best, I will add).
Also, note the interview with Gilly and Mary Kubica (another good one).
The Art Of Domestic Suspense by CRIME READS.
Podcast Interview with Gilly McMillan and Hank Garner "Stories Behind the Stories" The Author Stories Podcast.
A special thank you to HarperCollins and Edelweiss for an advanced reading copy of #IKnowYouKnow. I also purchased the audiobook narrated by Steve Brand, Steve West, and Imogen Church for a highly entertaining and satisfying performance.
About the Author
Gilly Macmillan is the Edgar Nominated and New York Times bestselling author of What She Knew. She grew up in Swindon, Wiltshire and lived in Northern California in her late teens. She worked at The Burlington Magazine and the Hayward Gallery before starting a family.
Since then she's worked as a part-time lecturer in photography, and now writes full-time.
She resides in Bristol, England. Read More