The Twyford Code by Janice Hallett

Book Description:

It’s time to solve the murder of the century…

Forty years ago, Steven Smith found a copy of a famous children’s book by disgraced author Edith Twyford, its margins full of strange markings and annotations. Wanting to know more, he took it to his English teacher Miss Iles, not realising the chain of events that he was setting in motion. Miss Iles became convinced that the book was the key to solving a puzzle, and that a message in secret code ran through all Twyford’s novels. Then Miss Iles disappeared on a class field trip, and Steven has no memory of what happened to her.

Now, out of prison after a long stretch, Steven decides to investigate the mystery that has haunted him for decades. Was Miss Iles murdered? Was she deluded? Or was she right about the code? And is it still in use today?

Desperate to recover his memories and find out what really happened to Miss Iles, Steven revisits the people and places of his childhood. But it soon becomes clear that Edith Twyford wasn’t just a writer of forgotten children’s stories. The Twyford Code has great power, and he isn’t the only one trying to solve it…

Perfect for fans of Richard Osman, Alex Pavesi and S.J. Bennett, The Twyford Code will keep you up puzzling late into the night.

My Thoughts:

Having read and really enjoying the author’s debut novel, The Appeal, I was very much looking forward to reading her newest one.

As with The Appeal, this book has a unique way of telling us the story. This time it’s through voice recordings by a character called Steven Smith. It centres around a book from his childhood that has him eager to find out what happened on a school trip. He reconnects with his old school friends of which not all of them are as pleased to talk to him about that day.

I found it a very intriguing story overall as I was eager to find out more about not only the disappearance of the missing teacher but also the connection with the children’s book. It’s all very cleverly written and it wasn’t until the very end when it is revealed to us, that all the pieces started to fit.

The Twyford Code is a great concept although it didn’t work quite as well for me as the author’s debut novel. It was still an engaging read that kept me on my toes as you really do need to concentrate on the story to take it all in as otherwise you could easily get lost with it. The ending and how it all comes together definitely had me surprised. Am very interested to see if the author carries on in the same sort of theme as she has with her two published novels. It’s certainly very unique.

My thanks to Viper Books for an advanced readers copy of this book. All opinions are my own and not biased in anyway.

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