Ask No Questions by Claire Allan @AvonBooksUK @ClaireAllan

Out 21st Jan 2021!

A twisty psychological thriller from bestselling author Claire Allan.

Book blurb

Not all secrets are meant to come out…

Twenty-five years ago, on Halloween night, eight-year-old Kelly Doherty went missing while out trick or treating with friends.
Her body was found three days later, floating face down, on the banks of the Creggan Reservoir by two of her young classmates.
It was a crime that rocked Derry to the core.

Journalist Ingrid Devlin is investigating – but someone doesn’t want her to know the truth. As she digs further, Ingrid starts to realise that the Doherty family are not as they seem. But will she expose what really happened that night before it’s too late?

My thoughts

It’s 2019, Halloween is fast approaching. 25 years earlier a young child Kelly went missing only to be found dead three days later.

Ingrid Devlin wants to write a piece for the Chronicle, the paper she works at, as the guy who was found guilty of Kelly’s murder says he is innocent. His case has been taken on. Ingrid thinks there’s a good story to be had but her editor only wants her to write a piece that won’t be contentious. Kelly agrees but, in her own time pursues a slightly different agenda hoping to get a book deal from it.

Ingrid not only speaks with Kelly’s parents, which the paper is ok with, but she visits the murderer, Jamesy Harte, who has been out of prison for eight years. Interviewing him is not what her Editor, Ryan, wants but thinking of the book she talks to him on her own time. Not wanting to be wrong Ingrid tries to keep an open mind but can’t help but believe Jamesy when he says he didn’t do it.

As she digs things start to happen – scary things. As she continues and the piece for the paper is printed there is an escalation to what is happening. The police become involved. It’s even more awful when Kelly’s father is attacked and badly hurt.

Still Ingrid pursues her own agenda. Meeting separately with each of the two brothers who, all those years ago, had been the ones that found Kelly’s body. They are very different from one another. One successful the other only just surviving. One agrees that Jamesy is the murderer, he was convicted after all, whilst the other expresses some doubt. Each of the brothers warns Ingrid about the other, each wants Ingrid to keep away from the other.

Ingrid has a difficult relationship with her editor, Ryan, his work over the years she has admired but he is behaving strangely over her piece on Kelly and they’re secretly a lot closer than, perhaps, they should be. Ingrid senses Ryan is keeping something back. Ryan is adamant that Ingrid should back off from further investigation into Kelly’s murder.

Ingrid is the main protagonist and most of the story is told from her point of view (POV) but there are also a couple of other characters who speak. The setting of Derry, Northern Ireland is important to the plot and it is always interesting to read books with different settings than I might normally read, to hear the lilt of another place and get a different perspective on people’s lives.

I was gripped yet, in the end, felt deeply saddened at how the attempt to put right the consequences of one terrible, awful act became such a catalyst for so many more dreadful things.

The characters are well written and the storyline will keep you hooked. This is a dark, twisted tale that is well worth reading.

Previous review: The Liar’s Daughter

Thanks: To Ellie Pilcher (Marketing Manager, Avon) for the invite to read and review Ask No Questions by Claire Allan. Also, for an eCopy via NetGalley of the book.


Published by: Avon – A division of Harper Collins Publishers Ltd. eBook (21 Jan. 2021) | Paperback (8 July 2021)

Buy: AmazonSmileUK

Author: Claire Allan is a former journalist from Derry in Northern Ireland, where she still lives with her husband, two children, two cats and a hyperactive puppy.

In her eighteen years as a journalist she covered a wide range of stories from attempted murders, to court sessions, to the Saville Inquiry into the events of Bloody Sunday, right down to the local parish notes.

She has previously published eight women’s fiction novels.

Claire also writes as Freya Kennedy her brand new alter ego. Claire has published eleven novels. Now, as Freya, she is writing warm, funny women’s fiction for Boldwood.

Her first thriller, Her Name Was Rose, was published in 2018 and became a USA Today bestseller, followed by Apple of My Eye and Forget Me Not in 2019. The Liar’s Daughter was published in 2020.

When she’s not writing, she’ll more than likely be found on Twitter.

@claireallan |Claire’s website


Also by Claire Allan Her Name Was Rose | Apple of My Eye | Forget Me Not | The Liar’s Daughter

2 Comments on “Ask No Questions by Claire Allan @AvonBooksUK @ClaireAllan


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