She Lies in Wait by Gytha Lodge is a murder mystery about solving a long-cold case. The following book club questions will have spoilers so if you haven’t read the book yet, check out my preview and review first.
This is the first of a new series featuring DCI Jonah Sheens. Aurora’s body is unearthed in a hideaway that only the six friends knew about, and Jonah Sheens is put in charge of solving the long-cold case. Back in 1983, as a young cop in their small town, he had known the teenagers—including Aurora—personally, even before taking part in the search. Now he’s determined to finally get to the truth of what happened that night. Sheens’ investigation brings the members of the camping party back to the forest, where they will be confronted once again with the events that left one of them dead, and all of them profoundly changed forever.
Before we get into the questions, here’s a list of the main characters:
DCI Johan Sheens: the lead detective on the case
Juliette Hansen: the newest detective in town
Aurora: the fourteen-year-old murder victim
Brett: the star athlete
Topaz: Aurora’s older sister
Connor: the hot-tempered guy who has a crush on Topaz
Coralie: Topaz’s best friend and follower
Brenner: the drug guy
Jojo: hippie friend
Mr. Mackenzie: Aurora’s high school English teacher
OK, let’s get into the book club questions!
- The story alternates between the present and the night of Aurora’s murder. Did you like the alternating perspectives and timelines? How did it slowly reveal what actually happened that night?
- Let’s talk about who we thought had murdered Aurora to begin with. Did you suspect Brett all along? Or did you think it was someone else?
- What did you think about the character of Jonah? Let’s talk about the section where Hansen confronts him about what happened to Zofia? Did you suspect Jonah had attacked her or was it to throw off the reader?
- Going back to the ’80s, why was Topaz so dismissive of her sister? Was she jealous of her in a way?
- There’s a good part of the book that seems to point the finger at Aurora’s teacher Mr. Mackenzie. Did you think he had anything to do with it? Do you believe he was ever inappropriate with students?
- Why do you think the police wasn’t able to find Aurora back in the ’80s?
- Do you believe the friends when they said they never suspected each other? Why do you think they remained friends for the most part?
- How was Brett able to get away with all his horrible deeds for so long? Why didn’t anyone suspect him?
- What was the most surprising aspect of this story to you?
- This is the first book in a series. Will you read the next book? Why or why not?
- What did you think about Hansen and her character development? Do you think we’ll learn more about her in book two?