> Skip to content

Careless talk wrecks lives...

'Everyone is going to be talking about The Rumour. An intriguing premise, a creeping sense of dread, and a twist you won't see coming!’ Shari Lapena, bestselling author of The Couple Next Door.

'In this chilling tale of paranoia, suspicion and accusation, Lesley Kara keeps you guessing until the final page.' Paula Hawkins, No.1 bestselling author of The Girl on the Train and Into the Water
'A great debut with a slyly clever premise and a rollercoaster ride to the very last sentence.' Fiona Barton, bestselling author of The Widow and The Child

When single mum Joanna hears a rumour at the school gates, she never intends to pass it on. But one casual comment leads to another and now there’s no going back . . .
Rumour has it that a notorious child killer is living under a new identity, in their sleepy little town of Flinstead-on-Sea.

Sally McGowan was just ten years old when she stabbed little Robbie Harris to death forty-eight years ago – no photos of her exist since her release as a young woman.

So who is the supposedly reformed killer who now lives among them? How dangerous can one rumour become? And how far will Joanna go to protect her loved ones from harm, when she realizes what it is she’s unleashed?

Reviews

In this chilling tale of paranoia, suspicion and accusation, Lesley Kara keeps you guessing until the final page.

Paula Hawkins, No.1 bestselling author of THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN and INTO THE WATER

A great debut with a slyly clever premise and a rollercoaster ride to the very last sentence.

Fiona Barton, bestselling author of THE WIDOW and THE CHILD

An intriguing premise, a creeping sense of dread, and a twist you won't see coming! Everyone is going to be talking about The Rumour.

Shari Lapena, bestselling author of THE COUPLE NEXT DOOR

A brilliant premise with a killer twist. The Rumour depicts the prejudices and secrets that simmer in a small seaside town to devastating effect.

Colette McBeth, author of AN ACT OF SILENCE

Pssst, have you heard... #TheRumour is a cracking thriller about the damage that idle gossip can wreak in a small town. I thought I had the twist worked out. Boy was I wrong!

Tammy Cohen

A brilliantly addictive debut...with a reveal that caught me completely by surprise.

Good Housekeeping

Shocking and convincing.

Literary Review

Suspicion and lies, paranoia and anguish follow in this twisty psychological thriller.

Choice Magazine

Gripping...the evocation is beautifully done.

Observer

Whip-smart, every well-crafted page simmers with tension and menace.

Sunday Mirror

Tense and very twisty . . . will have you hooked.

Sun

Captivating . . . a subtle examination of the damage that gossip can do.

Daily Mail

This is one of those novels that sweeps you away and doesn't let go until the final killer blow.

Heat

Read More

Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback

    9781787631007

    January 2, 2019

    Bantam Press

    320 pages

    RRP $32.99

    Online retailers

    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Dymocks
    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    • The Nile
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Paperback

    9780552175500

    August 6, 2019

    Corgi

    416 pages

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Dymocks
    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    • The Nile
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781473559448

    December 10, 2018

    Transworld Digital

    416 pages

    Online retailers

    • Amazon Kindle AU
    • iBooks
    • Google Play EBook AU
    • Kobo Ebook
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks

Extract

It’s happening again. Don’t ask me how I know. I just do. I see it in the roll of the waves, the way they’re bearing in at a slant. Fast. Relentless.

I feel it in the nip of the air on my skin, smell it in the rotting leaves and damp earth, hear it in the silence of the watching crows. You’re coming for me again and there’s nothing I can do to stop you.

This is how it happens. One night I go to bed and everything’s fine. Everything’s under control. The story has ceased to be a story. It’s real. Solid. Unbreakable. Then I wake up and it’s changed. Cracks have appeared overnight and I realize that I’ve been fooling myself all this time, that I’ve only ever been the most fragile of constructions.

I’m the hunted. I’ll always be the hunted.

 

Continue Reading
Article
My Inspirations for Writing The Rumour

I started writing this novel in August 2017, but the original idea came to me a few years before when someone I was working with passed on a rumour to me.

Also by Lesley Kara