A different kind of creepy. James has written excellent ghost stories demonstrating what an atmospheric and disturbing writer he can be. In this book he uses the fears of the modern day: how easy it is for someone to stalk and invade someone else's' life. This story, or a version of it, can happen to anyone.
So many of my friends have uploaded data of their runs and cycle routes with times and conditions. All apparently innocent. I have no interest in their personal goals so haven't really looked into this information - until now. It truly is alarming what you can find out about someone from this data. All good among friends, of course.
In this tale, a middle-aged professional man sees a woman running and she reminds him of an infatuation he had while he was at school. Glad to say that the woman isn't a teenager (that's another type of creepy) but was vulnerable just as much. Disturbing to see the levels of obsession this apparently normal man would go to just to see her or pictures of her. Plus the fact that it is so easy.
Being a professional and socially able man, nobody suspects him of any wrongdoing. James portrays this really well. The tension increases as we move into a couple of life and death situations, willing the victims on, please don't die, the agonising wait to see if they pull through. Expertly done.
The last section is very dramatic (maybe a little too much to be realistic, but hey, we need it) but it highlights how easy it is for things to be manipulated, how we put trust in people because they are educated and respected and how, ultimately, we shouldn't. Everyone take care. Great writing, recommended.
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