Twenty-seven-year-old Natalie Miller is struggling to come to terms with the death of her stepmother, Ellen, whom the police believe, but cannot prove, Natalie murdered. Natalie doesn’t deny that she murdered Ellen: there are terrifying blanks in her memory, things she should remember but can’t following Ellen’s highly suspicious death eighteen months ago. And then, in the space of one short week, Natalie’s life becomes even more of a nightmare. Not just for her, either, but for a disparate group of people whose paths cross hers, three of whom ultimately pay the price for it with their lives. She also suspects that she is being stalked by someone whom she feels she should know but can’t remember from where or when.
Abandoned by all of her friends, consumed with self-doubt and fearful of the renewed interest in her by the police following the savage murder of an elderly down-and-out whom she befriended while out jogging, Natalie nevertheless cannot rid herself of the feeling that despite everything that is going on around her – and for all of which she can find no explanation – her own life is never at risk. There is some other reason why she is being stalked; some other reason why she repeatedly finds a stranger, Miss Purple Painted Toenails – a teenager with plenty of attitude who seems to know more about Natalie than she does herself – waiting for her when she returns home from her daily early morning jogging sessions.
Natalie has no idea why the teenager has become so determinedly involved in her life which is now spiralling rapidly out of control. She finds herself with no alternative, however, but to agree to the teenager’s typically bizarre plan to bring matters to a head, only to become even more deeply embroiled in trouble when things go disastrously wrong at the last moment.