Lydia Danse is a devoted wife, with a wonderful son to raise and nurture. But now her family is being torn apart by a vicious man submerged in his own insanity: her husband. She will do anything to get her son away from him. But Arthur Danse is not a man who surrenders his possessions. He holds on tight to what is his. And he never lets go…

Only Child (Stranglehold) (UK)

Released as Stranglehold in the United States.


Arthur Danse doesn’t live by the normal rules. He knows he has been put on earth for a purpose – to show people the the world is a dark and terrible place. To say no to Arthur Danse is to receive a lesson in fear and pain. No matter who you are. Wife…lover…stranger…or eight-year-old son.


Lydia McCloud is one of life’s givers. A nurse whose own hard upbringing gives her a special sympathy for those in need. Lydia doesn’t discover the real Arthur until it’s far too late. Until she’s married to him and their son Robert has become the centre of her world. And she’s forced into the battle of her life for the sake of her only child…

Only Child (Stranglehold)

Arthur Danse is one of Ketchum’s most dark and frightening creations. A user, a violent abuser and quite possibly much, much worse. And it fails to his wife Lydia to protect the life and sanity of both herself and her six-year-old son – their only child.




Lydia McCloud meets Arthur Danse at a wedding party in Plymouth, N.H., and she thinks he’s a man she could grow to love.


Arthur sees things differently. In Lydia, he sees the sort of woman people always want to protect. He decides he’s going to show her “she wouldn’t always be protected.”


Once their only child, Robert, is born, Arthur’s behavior worsens. When courts become involved, the nightmare really begins.


This scathing novel is an indictment of a justice system that makes a mockery of its very name.