The Key In The Lock

The Key In The Lock

A haunting historical mystery steeped in explosive secrets and lost love


'Haunting, vivid and urgent' Stacey Halls
'Absorbing, beautifully written' Rosie Andrews
'An ingenious page turner' The Times


Inside lies a secret that won't stay hidden . . .

The Great War is ending, but it has taken Ivy's son. Ivy is consumed by discovering what happened to her boy out there in the trenches, while her husband only wants to forget.

Then a man comes back into Ivy's life who can help her find out. A man who once stole Ivy's heart. A man who also lost his son to a tragedy. A man whose name she hasn't spoken in thirty years.

As Ivy questions her part in the fire at Polneath House, she unlocks a secret that's been burning ever since. But will the truth destroy her - or set her free?


'It will recruit fans of Du Maurier and Waters' Patrick Gale

'A story of smouldering secrets, lingering guilt and hidden love' Daily Express

'The perfect gothic novel' Stuart Turton

'This is a novel of true elegance, deftly and satisfyingly plotted' Imogen Hermes Gowar

'Atmospheric and rich with evocative detail' Harriet Tyce

'An intriguing, elegantly constructed gothic mystery' Sunday Times

'A smouldering gothic mystery that slowly envelopes you' Joseph Knox


  • An intriguing, elegantly constructed gothic mystery
    The Sunday Times

About the author

Beth Underdown

Beth Underdown lectures in creative writing at the University of Manchester. Her debut, The Witchfinder's Sister, was a Richard & Judy pick, a Sunday Times bestseller and winner of the HWA Debut Crown Award in 2017. The Key in the Lock is her second book and was a Sunday Times historical fiction pick and received wide acclaim.
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