Margaret Yorke has written numerous crime fiction novels and is a past chairman of the Crime Writers’ Association (CWA). In 1999 she was awarded the CWA’s Cartier Diamond Dagger Award for her outstanding contribution to the genre.
Intimate Kill was first published in 1985 and I think it’s an excellent example of her work Margaret Yorke writes in a fluent style, one that draws you into the story effortlessly. Stephen Dawes has been released from prison after serving 10 years of a life sentence for murdering his wife, Marcia. Her body had never been found. Stephen knew he was innocent and believed that she had killed herself, making him out to be the murderer, devastated when he had asked for a divorce. He is determined to find out how she did it.
The book is divided into three parts. Part One deals with Stephen’s search for the truth about Marcia’s death and for his daughter. Stephen’s marriage had not been a happy one and he’d been having an affair with Ruth Watson which resulted in the birth of his daughter, Susannah. Part Two moves back in time eleven years, dealing with the events that led up to Marcia’s disappearance and subsequent events. In Part Three Stephen discovers the truth and nearly loses his own life.
It’s not difficult to work out what actually happened but that doesn’t detract from the pleasure of reading this book. Margaret Yorke is so skilled in characterisation that she has captured the emotions and feelings, as well as the weaknesses and ambitions of all the characters. I believed in all of them. The plot moves swiftly and with a real sense of evil as the tension mounts.