The Stalker’s Tale: Chilling, Vivid Novel Stares Down on Anyone Who Feels They’ve Been Watched…
Years ago, stalking was fairly well-defined, as an obsessed man or woman spent their time invading the privacy of another, watching their every move in person. But in contemporary London, the rules have changed, and now Bianca Johnson must protect herself from a man she briefly let in years ago, a man prepared to do anything, no matter how twisted, to, quite literally, ‘get’ the girl.
Christine Wood’s ‘The Stalker’s Tale’ is an engrossing novel where three stories collide against the backdrop of high-society London. Deception runs rampant and love holds no true definition.
It’s unlike anything readers would have encountered before.
The Stalker's Tale follows three storylines (two set in fashionable, contemporary London, a third in 1930's bohemian Fitzrovia & 1940's post-occupation Paris), representing three lives, simultaneously estranged, yet entwined in a decades long tale of Stalking.
Successful modern day portrait painter, Bianca Johnson, is forced to warily defend herself against relentless stalker, wealthy entrepreneur, Hesketh James (since married, with a disabled nine year old son), with whom she had a brief affair twenty-five years earlier.
Bianca is determined, meanwhile, to boldly claim the freedom to live an unorthodox, secretive life with her frequently absent Italian film director husband, Leonardo Vescarro, while at the same time conducting a clandestine affair with her very first love, the London publisher, Stephen Marchant, to whom she was once engaged to be married.
The novel's numerous complex dramas are set against her fraught, sorrowful relationship with her estranged mother, the beautiful, turbulent Anya, whose wartime affair with the Parisian aristocrat, Charles de Courcelles, had led to the breakdown of her marriage to Bianca's father, the water-colourist painter, William Johnson, who made his reputation in the 1930's, followed by his war years in the Middle East.
These three storylines plait together evenly throughout the novel, creating suspense, as Hesketh's increasingly desperate and erratic behaviour finally culminates in an incoherent explosion of violence.
“Many will relate to that eerie feeling of being watched,” says Christine Wood. “This book will answer some of their questions, while throwing up many others. Just how horrifying can the consequences be of an old flame who was better left extinguished starts trying to burn again? Is mental illness a defence? What happens when the victim starts stalking the mind of their stalker? And how should she fight back to save her family? Curious?!”
Tom Perrin, Publisher at Zuleika said, “This book is gripping and powerful. Stalking remains a destructive and often deadly crime in the real world, so this book definitely steps away from thoroughbred fiction to leave readers with plenty to think about. It has universal appeal and, while it’s not easy reading, it’s going to leave its audience begging for more.”
‘The Stalker’s Tale’, from Zuleika Publishing, is due for release on April 23rd, 2020.