They wanted to get away. But now they can't get out.
A page-turning thriller perfect for fans of Ruth Ware's IN A DARK, DARK WOOD and Lucy Foley's THE HUNTING PARTY.
Seven friends gather at a castle in the Scottish Borders. One last girls' weekend before Georgina's wedding. Near the castle, through a path in the woods, is a loch. After a few drinks, they head down to the water to take photos. The loch is wild, lonely, and stunningly beautiful. They set their camera to self-timer and take some group shots. Later, looking back at the pictures, they see something impossible.
Behind them, eyes wide, a small, drenched boy emerges from the water.
But none of them saw him, and nobody knows where he went. They're miles from the nearest town. How did he get there? Where did he go?
As the weekend unravels and terrible secrets come to light, it soon becomes clear that their perfect weekend is turning into a perfect nightmare. They're desperate to leave - but someone won't let them.
All is not as it seems in this classy, clever mystery
Sinister and atmospheric, peeling back the superficial veneers of friendship to reveal the darker truths that lurk beneath.
A psychological thriller with both depth and drive, Down By The Water is a gripping mystery. - Nathan Ripley
Down by the Water is a dark and twisty tale of female friendship that commands your attention from start to finish. Elle Connel is a novelist at the top of her game. - Claire L. Heuchan
Tense, mesmerising and heartbreaking, I was truly gripped
A chilling drama - Sunday Times
Elle Connel is the pseudonym of Lucy Ribchester, whose previous novels, The Hourglass Factory and The Amber Shadows, were historical thrillers. She has a first class degree in English from the University of St Andrews and a Masters in Shakespeare Studies from Kings College London. Her previous work has won her a Scottish Book Trust New Writers Award, a Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship, and short-listings for the Costa Short Story Award and Manchester Fiction Prize. She lives in Edinburgh with her partner and two sons. Down by the Water is her first book as Elle Connel.