A Crime NovelA London woman taking her grandson to the park finds her lonely life disrupted by murder in this award-winning author’s “gripping thriller” (Reginald Hill).
Poppy Tasker never imagined this would be her life at age fifty: divorced, living alone, and stuck caring for a tiny grandson while his mother is busy seeking public office. Sad and resentful, Poppy feels completely detached from the nannies she’s now forced to associate with when she brings little Toby to the park to play. But her discomfort is replaced by a creeping dread when she notices a stranger watching her and the boy a bit too closely—and her fear turns to near panic when the man tries to follow them home.
The following day, the stalker is found murdered in the park, his corpse decorated in an odd and troubling manner. Poppy’s terror grows as she realizes that she and her innocent grandson have become entangled in something twisted and very dangerous. Then the nanny of one of Toby’s playground friends meets an untimely end—and Poppy realizes that this may only be the beginning.
One of the true greats of contemporary British crime fiction, Peter Dickinson is often compared to luminaries including Ruth Rendell, Peter Lovesey, P. D. James, and Reginald Hill. Play Dead is a shining example of his storytelling artistry.
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“Shapely and intelligent . . . Play Dead rises triumphant.” —Chicago Tribune
“Dickinson’s touch is so masterly here that he makes other fine domestic mysteries seem quite amateurish.” —Kirkus Reviews
“An adroit and suspenseful tale.” —The New York Times Book Review
“The works of British mystery writer Peter Dickinson are like caviar—an acquired taste that easily can become an addiction.” —Time
“The whodunits of British novelist Peter Dickinson are exceptional.” —Newsweek
“Wherever he turns his swirling imagination, Dickinson finds the mysterious in the familiar and writes mesmerizing whodunits.” —The Washington Post Book World
“He is a true original, a superb writer who revitalizes the conventions of the mystery genre.” —P. D. James
About the author
Peter Dickinson was born in Africa but raised and educated in England. From 1952 to 1969 he was on the editorial staff of Punch, and since then has earned his living writing fiction of various kinds for children and adults. His books have been published in several languages throughout the world.
The recipient of many awards, Dickinson has been shortlisted nine times for the prestigious Carnegie Medal for children's literature and was the first author to win it twice. The author of twenty-one crime and mystery novels for adults, Dickinson was also the first to win the Gold Dagger Award of the Crime Writers' Association for two books running: Skin Deep (1968) and A Pride of Heroes (1969).
A collection of Dickinson's poetry, The Weir, was published in 2007. His latest book, In the Palace of the Khans, was published in 2012 and was nominated for the Carnegie Medal.
Dickinson has served as chairman of the Society of Authors and is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. He was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 2009 for services to literature.