‘A chilling and gripping original thriller by a great new talent. You'll want to race through to the scary climax.’ – Grazia
‘Extraordinarily powerful and evocative… will leave you breathless.’ – Daily Mirror
Steven Lamb is 12 when he writes his first letter . . . to a serial killer
Every day after school, whilst his classmates swap football stickers, twelve-year-old Steven digs holes on Exmoor, hoping to find a body. His uncle disappeared aged eleven and is assumed to have fallen victim to the notorious serial killer Arnold Avery - but his body has never been found.
Steven's Nan does not believe her son is dead. She still waits for him to come home, standing bitter guard at the front window while her family fragments around her. Steven is determined to heal the widening cracks between them before it's too late - even if that means presenting his grandmother with the bones of her murdered son.
So Steven takes the next logical step, carefully crafting a letter to Arnold Avery in prison. And there begins a dangerous cat-and-mouse game between a desperate child and a bored psychopath . . .
*Belinda Bauer's pulse-pounding new thriller, EXIT, is available to pre-order now*
"[Belinda Bauer] is such an interesting writer - a restless intelligence that always goes its own way, but always comes up with something that feels both surprising but inevitable."
"Extraordinarily powerful and provocative... will leave you breathless"
"An excellent first novel, with a highly original plot"
"A psychological tour-de-force about the cruelty of hope and, ultimately, the triumph of innocence"
"The reader is fully gripped... Bauer's first novel shows an extraordinary power of imagination and, vital in crime fiction, the ability to create fear and empathy in the reader"
"In this atmospheric debut, Bauer ably paints a convincingly chilling portrait of a child killer, but it is her moving portrayal of a lonely, bullied child with a comfortless life that singles her out as an accomplished writer"
"Blacklands caused the hearts of hardened reviewers to flip a beat"