A gripping new novel of psychological suspense by the author of Girl, 11
Pastor Rick tells us women are created to serve, to be pure, to submit, to be a delight to their husbands. Who are we to deny the very nature our Creator has built within us?
When Del Walker fled her small hometown and its cult-like church six years ago, she vowed never to go back. Lars, the love of her life, was about to marry local golden girl Eve, author of a popular blog about the church’s ‘Noble Wife’ teachings.
But now Lars is dead, and Del is convinced it couldn’t have been an accident.
When she returns for the funeral, she discovers the church—and the insidious, patriarchal teachings of Pastor Rick Franklin—has taken over the town. And Eve isn’t acting much like a grieving widow.
Del is determined to cut through the church’s lies and corruption to find out what really happened to Lars—even if it means confronting memories she’s spent years trying to bury.
‘Lay Your Body Down is an emotionally charged and unnerving thriller. Dangerous secrets, complex characters, and more than one “oh my God” moment. You won’t see the twists coming.’
‘In Lay Your Body Down, Amy Suiter Clarke perfectly captures the stifling air of small towns and insular churches. More than a murder mystery, this is an excavation of betrayal, revealing the ugly truth that has propped up so many life-destroying lies.’
‘Amy Suiter Clarke’s Lay Your Body Down has everything I love in a good thriller—family drama, a determined main character, and an unflinching look at a timely issue. The story of Del Walker returning home to confront her past—and members of the corrupt mega church that was once the center of her life—will stay with you long after you reach its gripping conclusion.’
‘Powerful and intricately nuanced, Lay Your Body Down is the kind of reading experience that stays with you long after the final page. Amy Suiter Clarke has created a novel as thought-provoking as it is propulsive. With a carefully winding plot and incisive commentary on religion, community, autonomy, and the long reach of the past, this story is perfect for book clubs, because it inspires so many conversations. A truly stunning sophomore novel.’
‘Enthralling…[A] salacious mix of small-town cults and amateur sleuthing.’
‘A small-town murder mystery that is also a searing examination of rigid religious ideology, the mindset and psychology of indoctrination, and the devastating consequences for women’s lives and autonomy. Lay Your Body Down is not only a gripping thriller, but a nuanced and compelling exploration of faith, family, power and accountability.’
‘A devastating portrait of a cult like institution and a town in its thrall.’
‘A powerful and alluring novel about mob mentality, indoctrination, and confronting one’s demons…Gripping and nuanced.’
‘Clarke expertly delivers plenty of great twists and reveals through to the last page. But it is much more than this. It is an exploration of the dangerous and exploitative power of religion in the hands of unscrupulous and charismatic leaders.’
‘As someone who was raised in church, I thought the depiction of putting forth a “joyful” outward appearance while struggling on the inside was so relatable and well done. This story is haunting and will stick with you long after the last page has been turned.’
‘Terrifically terrifying…Lay Your Body Down may ostensibly be about the death of one man but it comes to reveal a much darker and deeper violence being perpetrated against women.’
‘This mystery/thriller examines the intrusion of church doctrines into family spaces…Befitting the genre, the twists and turns are plentiful.’
‘In every truly great thriller, there needs to be a fantastic twist; Lay Your Body Down will fill your quota for a year.’
‘This book is the definition of a page turner.’