Into the Shadows is the first book in the Clara Day series.
The books chart Clara’s journey from a naïve university student to one of the greatest spies of our time; That is to say, she existed within the world of espionage, but whether she is ever really part of it, is a different matter… and who she really ends up being only becomes apparent at the very end of the whole series. It is her grand daughter who finally pieces it all together.
It all starts (or ends?) with a letter and a diary from Clara to her grand daughter, Lizzie (Click on the word ‘letter’ to read it.).
Lizzie, desperate to see her work published and be able to call herself an author, jumps at the chance to serialise her grandmother’s tale of adventure and intrigue. It is only as she draws towards the end of her grandmother’s story that she realises it was not because she was a budding author she was sent the information; and the other items she inherited take on a significance she had not appreciated earlier. Her grandmother warned her to disguise the true identity of the characters – had she done this well enough? As Clara’s story ends Lizzie’s begins… Will Lizzie take up the challenge her grandmother has laid down?
– But that is all a long way off! Before Lizzie, there was Clara.
Lizzie’s first book charting Clara’s life is ‘Into the Shadows’
In the beginning it is October 1985 and Clara is in the first term of her second year at university in Worcester. She grew up in rural isolation, in a tiny village nestled within the Quantock Hills, Somerset. Her mother is not keen for her to go university, and undermines Clara’s own confidence in her ability to cope, even in a relatively small and friendly university.
However, she makes a few friends, immerses herself in her studies and starts to unfurl. Her timidity makes her observant and her quietness allows her to slide through university unnoticed – usually. Shy and unsure of herself she hides in her books and dreams: And then she meets Luke and daydreams and reality collide. Life changes and so Clara has to, too. It spins her down a path she could not have imagined, even in her wildest dreams.
This story, set in the early 1980s against the historical and political backdrop of the final years of the Cold War when IRA terrorist activity was constantly in the news, Margaret Thatcher was the Prime Minister and the famine in Ethiopia finally made world news. Sade, Madonna and Live Aid to name a few were on the radio, and Back to the Future III and Greystoke were in the cinema.
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