One Puzzling Afternoon: A Novel (Paperback)

One Puzzling Afternoon: A Novel By Emily Critchley Cover Image

One Puzzling Afternoon: A Novel (Paperback)


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One of People Magazine's "must-read" books!

"A clever, keep-'em-guessing murder mystery, an empathetic yet realistic portrayal of the toll dementia takes, and a meditation on how the brain can bury the most tragic memories...An outstanding must-read." —Booklist, STARRED review

I kept your secret Lucy. I've kept it for more than sixty years...

It is 1951, and at number six Sycamore Street fifteen-year-old Edie Green is lonely. Living with her eccentric mother and her mother's new boyfriend, she is desperate for something to shake her from her dull, isolated life.

So when the popular, pretty Lucy Theddle befriends Edie, she thinks all her troubles are over. Even though Lucy has a secret, one Edie is not certain she should keep.

Then Lucy goes missing.

Now in 2018, Edie is eighty-four and still living in the same small town, when one afternoon she glimpses Lucy Theddle, still looking the same as she did at fifteen. Her family write it off as one of her many mix ups, there's a lot Edie gets confused about these days. But Edie knows she's the key to finding Lucy. 

Time is running out and Edie must piece together the clues before Lucy is forgotten forever.

Product Details ISBN: 9781728287164
ISBN-10: 1728287162
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Publication Date: October 3rd, 2023
Pages: 368
Language: English
"A clever, keep-‘em-guessing murder mystery, an empathetic yet realistic portrayal of the toll dementia takes, and a meditation on how the brain can bury the most tragic memories...An outstanding must-read." — Booklist, STARRED review

"This beautifully written suspense heartbreaking as it depicts a woman sinking deeper into dementia." — Library Journal

"A captivating and poignant book, I was completely hooked. You can't help but fall for Edie as she desperately tries to find the lost friend from her past, while she begins to lose herself to dementia in the present." — Marianne Cronin, author of The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot 

"An uplifting, bittersweet story with a page-turning mystery at its heart. Emily Critchley writes about aging and memory with huge warmth and compassion.A beautifully atmospheric and endearing book." — Freya Sampson, author of The Last Chance Library

"One Puzzling Afternoon introduces Edie Green, a sympathetic protagonist, at the dawn and dusk of her womanhood, and gives the reader the satisfying task of slipping back and forth in time to untangle the events of younger Edie's life that have begun to slip from older Edie's memory." — Eva Jurczyk, international bestselling author of The Department of Rare Books and Special Collections

"One Puzzling Afternoon is a quiet, compelling mystery of a woman untangling the secrets locked inside herself. This truly unique story blends past and present in a way that feels real. Great atmosphere and even better characters." — Lucy Gilmore, author of The Lonely Hearts Book Club

"A splendid read. One Puzzling Afternoon is like finding your way through a maze blindfolded while sipping your favorite drink. Both scintillating and sincere, the prose pays homage to the nuance of memory and the confluence of age and understanding. I plan to spend many a coming afternoon with a Critchley novel in my hand, watching the past meet the present through her captivating lens." — Lo Patrick, author of The Floating Girls

"The story's beauty is in how it elegantly unpacks memory, friendship, and regret...Critchley leaves nothing undone and nothing to guess at later. Her pacing is exceptional as she unpeels Edie's story." — BookBrowse (Top Pick)