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From the award-winning and #1 bestselling author Candice Fox comes an ingenious and edgy suspense novel that will keep you guessing to the very last page . . .

'One of the best crime thrillers of the year' LEE CHILD

'A masterful novel' HARLAN COBEN

'A bright new star' JAMES PATTERSON

12.46: Thirteen-year-old Claire Bingley stands alone at a bus stop
12.47: Ted Conkaffey parks his car beside her
12.52: The girl is missing . . .

Six minutes – that’s all it took to ruin Detective Ted Conkaffey’s life. Accused but not convicted of Claire’s abduction, he escapes north, to the steamy, croc-infested wetlands of Crimson Lake.

Amanda Pharrell knows what it’s like to be public enemy number one. Maybe it’s her murderous past that makes her so good as a private investigator, tracking lost souls in the wilderness. Her latest target, missing author Jake Scully, has a life more shrouded in secrets than her own – so she enlists help from the one person in town more hated than she is: Ted Conkaffey.

But the residents of Crimson Lake are watching the pair’s every move. And for Ted, a man already at breaking point, this town is offering no place to hide . . .


In her willingness to go to the dark side and turn it upside-down, Fox is a daring Antipodean original.

Sydney Morning Herald

This is a tough, gripping thriller that shows why Fox is one of our best crime writers. Recommended.

Canberra Weekly

Fox masterfully pulls together all three threads – Ted’s alleged crime, Amanda’s past and the mystery of what happened to Jake – into a heart-pounding conclusion. Five stars.


It’s easy to see why Fox is becoming one of our most popular crime writers.

Woman's Day

The hottest property in Australian crime fiction.

Qantas Magazine

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback


    January 29, 2018

    Bantam Australia

    RRP $24.00

    Online retailers

    • Fishpond
    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • The Nile

    Find your local bookstore at www.booksellers.co.nz/directory

  • Trade Paperback


    January 30, 2017

    Bantam Australia

    400 pages

    RRP $37.00

    Online retailers

    • Fishpond
    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • The Nile

    Find your local bookstore at www.booksellers.co.nz/directory

  • EBook


    January 30, 2017

    RHA eBooks Adult

    400 pages

    Online retailers

    • iBooks NZ
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Google Play
    • Kobo
    • Booktopia NZ

    Find your local bookstore at www.booksellers.co.nz/directory


Here’s what I remember. And it’s a lie. It’s a composite memory, built from things I actually remember, stuff I heard during my trial, what I read in the paper and things whispered to me in my jail cell while I was on remand. Some bits and pieces I’m sure come from my nightmares – it’s possible that the storm wasn’t so foreboding, or her eyes so big and pretty. But the memory of those fatal moments is impossibly clear. More fabrication than history. The narrative is woven from many colourful strings. It cannot be snapped now, even if small fibres over the years will part and coil away. I believe it. Even if I know it isn’t true.

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Candice Fox Q&A

Find out what scares #1 New York Times bestselling author Candice Fox. 

Awards and Recognition

  • Ned Kelly Award for Best Crime Novel
    Ned Kelly Award for Best Crime Novel

Also by Candice Fox

Fifty Fifty
Never Never
Redemption Point


The Thirst
Make Me
Fool Me Once
The Girl on the Train
The Curious Incident of the Dog In the Night-time
Two Nights
A Stranger in the House
The Child
The Girl Who Was Taken
Final Girls
The Murder of Allison Baden-Clay
Never Never
The Lying Game
The 7th Function of Language
Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil
The Word Is Murder
I Am Pilgrim