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  • Published: 1 February 2022
  • ISBN: 9780241503317
  • Imprint: Viking
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 288
  • RRP: $32.99

The Key In The Lock

A haunting historical mystery steeped in explosive secrets and lost love

The captivating new historical mystery from the Richard and Judy bestselling author of THE WITCHFINDER'S SISTER

I still dream, every night, of Polneath on fire. Smoke unravelling from an upper window, and the terrace bathed in a hectic orange light . . . Now I see that the decision I made at Polneath was the only decision of my life. Everything marred in that one dark minute.

By day, Ivy Boscawen mourns the loss of her son Tim in the Great War. But by night she mourns another boy - one whose death decades ago haunts her still.

For Ivy is sure that there is more to what happened all those years ago: the fire at the Great House, and the terrible events that came after. A truth she must uncover, if she is ever to be free.

But once you open a door to the past, can you ever truly close it again?

  • Published: 1 February 2022
  • ISBN: 9780241503317
  • Imprint: Viking
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 288
  • RRP: $32.99

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Praise for The Key In The Lock

Brilliantly twisty, dripping with mystery and utterly heartbreaking

Emily Koch, author of IF I DIE BEFORE I WAKE and KEEP HIM CLOSE

Captivating and elegant and undoubtedly a future classic

Lucie McKnight Hardy, author of WATER SHALL REFUSE THEM

Absorbing, beautifully written . . . Everything I enjoy in a gothic mystery

Rosie Andrews, author of THE LEVIATHAN

I was captivated by the characters, the story and the sinuous, seamless plotting

Sarah Hilary, author of FRAGILE and the D.I. Marnie Rome series

It's eerie, claustrophobic atmosphere is reminiscent of Du Maurier . . . there's a poignancy to the writing that's so beautiful


Marvellous . . . gorgeously taut

Will Menmuir, author of THE MANY

Atmospheric, dark and compelling: an exquisitely crafted mystery'

Tammy Cohen, author of THE WEDDING PARTY

Deliciously intriguing from the very first sentence, with shades of Du Maurier and Dunmore. I was hooked by this exquisitely written tale of secrets and lies


A Cornish landscape evocative of Daphne du Maurier . . . brilliantly plotted

Louise Hare, author of THIS LOVELY CITY

A smouldering gothic mystery that slowly envelopes you, The Key in the Lock is a novel of repressed desire and well-tended grief - getting to the very heart of the grudges we hold against ourselves

Joseph Knox, author of TRUE CRIME STORY

The Key in the Lock is the perfect gothic novel. It has secrets, guilt, brilliant characters, and a grand old house built on a terrible past. An absolute corker


Engrossing . . . conveys emotion and excitement so elegantly

Adèle Geras

I was completely enthralled by this poetic, beautifully conceived and executed mystery full of secrets and subtlety

Imogen Robertson, author of KING OF KINGS

Reads as if a classic. Eerie, immersive and compelling. This is a book to savour

Essie Fox, author of THE LAST DAYS OF LEDA GREY

The Key in the Lock is an absolute triumph! Dark, clever and utterly enthralling, this is historical fiction - and storytelling - at its absolute best. I can't wait to read whatever Beth Underdown writes next

Elizabeth Macneal, author of THE DOLL FACTORY and CIRCUS OF WONDERS

The Key in the Lock will enthral fans of The Witchfinder's Sister. A brooding Cornish tale of a grieving mother obsessively unpicking the lies around the death of the child of the man she secretly loves, it'll also recruit fans of Du Maurier & Waters.

Patrick Gale, author of NOTES FROM AN EXHIBITION

Underdown's latest is a gothic mystery of the highest order. Chilling, sad, beautiful, and so elegantly conjured, it's a story that summons du Maurier but retains ghosts all its own. I raced through it, my heart in my mouth. Superb

Emma Stonex, author of THE LAMPLIGHTERS

This is a novel of true elegance, deftly and satisfyingly plotted. I expect impeccable prose from Beth Underdown but The Key In The Lock is also wise, thoughtful, and profoundly moving

Imogen Hermes Gowar, author of THE MERMAID AND MR HANCOCK

A dark and poignant Cornish tale of grief, love and the unpicking of long-buried secrets. Set in 1888 and 1918 with shades of Du Maurier and Sarah Waters

Anna Mazzola, author of THE CLOCKWORK GIRL

The perfect read for an autumnal weekend. Atmospheric and rich with evocative detail, I found myself in tears by the end

Harriet Tyce

A beautifully observed novel. Intriguing, beguiling and surprising until the very end - I was transfixed and moved by Underdown's storytelling

Claire Fuller, author of Unsettled Ground

Fans of gothic are going to love this. Cornwall, class-ridden secrets and beautiful writing

Sarah Ward, author of the DC Childs mysteries

The perfect read for an autumnal weekend. Atmospheric and rich with evocative detail, I found myself in tears by the end

Harriet Tyce, author of Blood Orange

A beautifully dark, eerie tale of haunted hearts and brooding secrets. Expertly plotted and exquisitely written, The Key in the Lock is the perfect gothic novel

Joanne Burn, author of The Hemlock Cure

A compelling gothic mystery

Good Housekeeping

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