Today it’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The Art of Deception by Louise Mangos. It’s contemporary and women’s fiction with elements of crime fiction.
About the Author
Louise Mangos grew up in the UK but has spent more than half her life in Switzerland. Her debut psychological thriller “Strangers on a Bridge” was a finalist in the Exeter Novel Prize and long listed for the Bath Novel Award. Her second novel “The Art of Deception” will be published in June 2019.
She lives on an Alp with her Kiwi husband and two sons, and when she’s not writing you can find her on the cross-country ski loop or swimming in the lake, depending on the season. She also writes short stories and flash fiction which have won prizes and been published in various anthologies. She is currently studying for her MA in crime writing at UEA.
Art college dropout Lucie arrives in a Swiss ski resort looking for work – but instead finds Mathieu.
Handsome, charismatic and from a good family, Matt seems like the perfect man. But as Lucie soon discovers, he has a dark side – one that will drive their relationship to a dramatic conclusion, and tear the life she has built for herself and their son apart.
Left fighting for her freedom in a foreign prison, and starting to lose her grip on reality, Lucie must summon all of her strength to uncover the truth and be reunited with her son before it’s too late.
The clock is ticking . . . but who can she trust?
‘When someone tells you who they are, believe them the first time’. I can’t say this loud enough, because an abuser, even a manipulative charming one with lots of experience, will show you what he or she is in some way or other. You just have to take off the pink-tinted glasses long enough to register it.
Following on from that, when all your friends, family, colleagues and acquaintances try to warn you or tell you what they know or see, then listen carefully. Don’t ignore what you probably already know deep in your heart. The other side of that coin is the fact many women and men, that includes young people, aren’t always aware what constitutes abuse, thereby are unable to extricate themselves from those type of relationships because they don’t recognise abuse for what it is.
Lucie chooses not to listen and to ignore the warning signs. She is a young girl in the throes of young love. Captivated by the attention she receives. Matt doesn’t fall in love or in lust really, he just sees another innocent and vulnerable young woman he can manipulate and control.
Lucie ends up behind bars for the death of her husband. Separated from her young son and a victim of a vigorous and perhaps biased legal system.
Mangos does something specific when it comes to the abuse, which seems quite intentional as the read progresses, it’s written as if it is secondary to the situation. The acceleration isn’t noted per se, but rather noted more in Lucie’s hesitation and reading of his body language and facial expressions. Now why is this important, this seemingly lackadaisical approach to describing that aspect of the relationship and story.
Whether intentional or not it portrays how this type of abusive relationship slips into a daily normality, hence it’s not always at the forefront of those flashbacks in the past. Abuse is more complex than it appears, which is why the outside often don’t understand and are critical of those being abused.
It’s contemporary and women’s fiction with elements of crime fiction. For me the question at the forefront of this story is whether the end result death is justified when you believe your life or the life of your child is in danger. The problem is that domestic abuse still isn’t seen as the real danger it is, which is why so many of the abused feel they have no other choice than the extreme.
Mangos gives the reader a multi-faceted story, and draws from multiple genres to create a thought-provoking read.