11-04-2013 11:57 PM
A tense, twisting thriller perfect for fans of Linda Fairstein.
Crown Prosecutor Helen West spends her days fighting for justice in domestic violence cases, so it's no wonder she can't find the energy to clean her own apartment.
Helen is thrilled to have found the lovely and sad-eyed Cath, whom she pays to clean for her. But when she notices bruises on Cath's arm, Helen can't stop thinking about what the girl must go home to at night. And when Cath's brother is brutally murdered, Helen is pulled down a dark and disturbing path where violence is the only guarantee.
Helen West, Crown Prosecutor in domestic violence court, is nearing burnout. Obtaining justice is an uphill battle, while her romance with Police Superintendent Geoffrey Bailey is on a downhill spiral. Then she takes on the case of her young cleaning woman, who is being beaten by her husband--and whose brother has already been brutally murdered.
11-04-2013 11:59 PM
P. D. James: Francis Fyfield, a lawyer herself, adds an extra dimension to detection.
Los Angeles Times Book Review:
Fyfield is a wonder...An intricate and surprise-filled plot.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly:
Tensions between the ideal and the actual drive Fyfield's thought-provoking, somewhat downbeat tale. Crown Prosecutor Helen West, last seen in Shadow Play (1993), is frustrated at work by battered women who won't testify against their abusers and at home by general untidiness. To tackle the latter, she hires Cath, a somewhat crude but diligent cleaning lady. When Helen glimpses bruises on Cath, she realizes that Cath's husband, a bartender named Joe, is just the sort of fellow she'd like to see hauled into court. At the same time, Helen's lover, Police Superintendent Geoffrey Bailey, is troubled by a case he thinks was prematurely closed: the pub-fight murder of Damien Flood, who was Cath's beloved brother. From a different angle than Helen's, Bailey's eye also focuses on Cath's husband. Then another murder changes the picture. Defying simple judgments and complacent assessments, the plot features a twist at the close that will leave readers mulling over all that has gone before-and Fyfield's message.
11-05-2013 12:02 AM - edited 11-05-2013 12:12 AM
In A CLEAR CONSCIENCE, Frances Fyfield tackles the complex issue of domestic abuse and demonstrates how there is no simple answer to this growing social problem. Victims are afraid to speak out against their attackers and the police are helpless to do everything. Their hands are tied by the local bureaucracy as well as red tape. In this book, the author focuses on one young woman who has lived a hard life. She will be interacting with other characters from the author's regular series. Helen West and Geoffrey Bailey will provide two unique viewpoints to the storyline; Helen, as a Crown Prosecutor in Domestic Violence Court and George, as a Police Superintendent.
Cath works as a cleaning woman for both Helen West and her upscale friend, Emily Eliot. The job seems as an escape from her dreary life and gives it purpose. She suffers from low self-esteem and is mourning the recent murder of her sibling, Damien. They were very close and have looked out for each other all of their lives. The only thrill she has in her life is seeing rich people whine as babies worrying about stupid problems. She lives her life on automatic pilot with no hope for change. She takes a giant step after her violent husband hits her one last time.
West, Bailey and Police Constable Mary Secura are upset with the system. They are forced to watch in the sidelines as a wife-beater escapes from justice after the accuser, Shirley Rix, disappears and fails to show up for a court hearing. The three characters had worked different aspects of the case and they all feel like failure. During the course of a murder investigation they learn about Cathís abuse by her husband and are powerless to stop it. Cath does not want their help and in the end, she might decide to take matters into her own hands.
A CLEAR CONSCIENCE should not be considered a police procedural but a character study in the human condition. The book is dark and disturbing concentrating on the psyches of all the players involved in the story. It is a thought-provoking novel and should be taken seriously. Abuse of any sort is not funny and this book does not pull any punches. This book will not give a clear conscience of the situation but it might help create one. This topic is too often ignored.
Reviewed by Angel L. Soto, January 2003
11-05-2013 12:04 AM
Frances is the presenter of a Radio 4 series called Tales from the Stave,
You can see the BBC series website here from where you can download content and see the full series listings.
Frances Fyfield's website is here:http://www.francesfyfield.co.uk/A_Clear_Conscience
Welcome to my official website.
Please use the content buttons above to navigate your way around it. Details of all my novels are listed, including my recently published new hardback, BLOOD FROM STONE. The reviewers seem to have liked it and I hope you do, too.
It's been a funny year, so far. I’ve been more than usually distracted from writing in the past few weeks because of putting together the new series of Tales from the Stave, which has taken me to London, Oxford and Berlin in the company of experts and performers, to see the original, handwritten scores of such diverse compositions as Mozart’s ‘Marriage of Figaro’ and Gilbert and Sullivan’s ‘Iolanthe’. All will be revealed when the programmes are broadcast onBBC Radio 4 – check out ‘Current Projects’ for full details. I’m privileged to be part of it.
Otherwise, I’m willing the garden to grow unattended, the house to clean itself, my waistline to remain more or less the same and everyone I love to stay alive and kicking. I hope you enjoy your visit to the site and keep checking back for the latest news.
11-05-2013 12:06 AM
To view all the jacket sleeves and see details on each novel please visit the novels page.
- A Question of Guilt (1988)
- Trial by Fire (1990) aka Not That Kind of Place
- Deep Sleep (1991)
- Shadow Play (1993)
- A Clear Conscience (1994)
- Without Consent (1996)
- A Helen West Omnibus (omnibus) (2002)
- A Second Helen West Omnibus (omnibus) (2004)
- Shadows On the Mirror (1989)
- Perfectly Pure and Good (1994)
- Staring At the Light (1999)
- Looking Down (2004)
- Safer Than Houses (2005)
- Sarah Fortune Omnibus (omnibus) (2007)
- Omnibus Seeking Sanctuary / Nature of the Beast (2007)
- The Playroom (1991) (originally written as Frances Hegarty)
- Half Light (1992) (originally written as Frances Hegarty)
- Let's Dance (1995)
- Blind Date (1998)
- Undercurrents (2000)
- The Nature of the Beast (2001)
- Seeking Sanctuary (2003)
- The Art of Drowning (2006)
- Blood from Stone (2008)
- Edgar Awards Best Novel nominee (1990) : A Question of Guilt Dagger Awards
- Best Novel nominee (2006) : Safer Than Houses
- Dagger Awards: Best Novel nominee STARING AT THE LIGHT (1999)
- Dagger Awards: Silver Dagger DEEP SLEEP (1998)
11-05-2013 12:09 AM