Bibliophile | ’12 Steps to a Long and Fulfilling Death’ by Sarah Smith

12 Steps to a Long and Fulfilling Death
by Sarah Smith
Ultimo Press

If Stacey had know she was going to die on Friday night, she might have done things differently but it actually took quite a long time for her to realise that she was dead. She did feel lost and aimless, but that was not unusual.

“She tried to focus. Vague fragments of memory came and went, but nothing certain. Nothing locked in. It was as if she was clicking a TV remote, trying to find the right channel. But none of it fitted the story.”

Stacy had been trying to live her best life in Los Angeles but now she was stuck in a Hotel California situation where she had checked out of the physical world but couldn’t leave … stuck in purgatory because someone had checked her out before her time.

Stacey wasn’t even sure how she had died. Being deceased and still present, she could witness what was happening but no one could see her or hear her, and she could change locations by just thinking herself somewhere else.

Feeling weightless, but somehow heavy, there was obviously unfinished business she had to deal with. Detectives Ed Beaufontaine and Rosie Garfield looked at the inconsistencies highlighted in the autopsy report and were also trying to find out what had happened to Stacey.

All Stacey could do was watch her possibly cheating fiancé with whom she had argued; her pathological ex-boyfriend who had been following her; her toxic girlfriends who had lied to her; her unreliable father who had also lied to her and her controlling psychologist who was the most dangerous of all.

Then she started to recall fragments of the night she died as the detectives find out just how unstable her life had been.

What a brilliant perspective. Sarah Smith takes the reader on a darkly comical journey of discovery, not only the find the perpetrator of Stacey’s demise, but to work out what really matters in life.

Lezly Herbert

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