Running in Circles by Claire Gray: a breathless mystery


You can’t out-run murder…

When Lucy Lewis landed herself a reporting job on an idyllic Thai island, she thought she’d found paradise.

But one day her dream turns into a nightmare…

A bomb goes off outside her hostel and there is more than one fatality.

Although the local paper she works for is mainly a tourist guide, the phone is soon ringing off the hook with people desperate to hear news of their loved ones.

Together with her editor, Steve Boyd, Lucy finds herself drawn into the investigation.

And things become more complicated when the dead body of someone connected to the paper washes up on the shore.

Was the bomb planted by terrorists? Are the two incidents connected?

Lucy finds herself running in circles as she desperately searches for the key to the mystery…

RUNNING IN CIRCLES is a thrilling international mystery set in Thailand: a private investigation featuring an exciting new female lead.

My review

Running in Circles is the perfect title for this book as it leaves you breathless! There is an awful lot of intrigue and action packed into its pages.

Lucy Lewis is an English journalist working in Thailand working on a weekly English-language paper. She and her editor, Steve Boyd, are battling to keep it going. They very quickly find themselves battling to discover who’s behind the fatal bomb blast near Lucy’s hostel. And then another body washes up. The mystery deepens and becomes very complex, but never complicated. The author aims to keeps us busy rather than overwhelm us with events and events are clear and easy to follow.

The backdrop of Thailand is woven into the story, with its exotic scenery and the many backpackers who come to discover the country and often themselves. The violent events seem completely at odds with the beauty of the place but as Lucy and Steve discover, if you start to scratch the surface then you begin to reveal a seedier side of life.  

Lucy and Steve aren’t perfect as investigators, or people. They both have some emotional baggage to cart around with them, and it’s their flawed human-ness that makes them so likeable and so successful as our protagonists. However, they are genuine, committed and do their best.

The plot is clever and certainly keeps us guessing, which is what we want in a thriller. There are clues for us to notice or miss, along with Lucy, and the denouement is both exciting and satisfying.

A very enjoyable read.

About the author

Claire Gray lives in the South Lakes with her husband and two small children. She studied Creative Writing at the Cumbria Institute of the Arts, which no longer exists, having been absorbed by the University of Cumbria. She graduated in 2006 and then went on to complete a journalism course at Darlington College.

That same year, she won a Northern Promise Award from New Writing North, and her work was featured in their anthology, entitled Ten Years On. Claire now works as a freelance copywriter and continues to write short stories, some of which have been published in magazines and online.

Recently, she has been guest editor for the prose section of SpeakEasy Magazine, which showcases Cumbrian writing. In 2015, she received editing advice from The Literary Consultancy through their Free Read scheme. They felt that her manuscript, Running in Circles, showed potential, and began approaching literary professionals on Claire’s behalf. Sapere Books published Running in Circles in 2019 and Claire is really excited to have published her first novel!  

Buy the book:

The book is published by Sapere Books.

Follow the rest of the tour, and check back to see what other reviewers have to say about ‘Running in Circles’: