Double trouble in case of mistaken identity

Hide and Be


Gary L. Stuart


£16.99, Gl Stuart Enterprises, Inc



A man introduces his identical twin brother to his girlfriend. The brother shake hands politely and the man kisses her affectionately because they are in a relationship. But she does not realise that the twins have played a trick on her: they have swapped roles and she kissed a stranger and shook hands with her lover.

The brothers are taking part in a private game they have played all their lives, to escape from an abusive upbringing. They have fun at other people’s expense. However, things get serious as later one twin is found dead in a fire and the other is arrested for a serious crime.

Hide and Be

Which twin is which? The survivor is the suspect in the murder of his twin, but he claims that he is the other twin and that the authorities have the wrong man. No one knows who the survivor is. DNA will not help as twins have almost identical DNA. Fingerprints are only helpful if you have a reliable set and know which belong to whom. Confused? The criminal court has to sort it out at an identity hearing and so a specialist doctor enters the story. He has to interview the surviving twin, who is on remand in prison. The novel develops the story by a series of interviews and flashbacks.

Twins and mistaken identity are not new ideas in literature. Hide and Be is written by a US trial lawyer who has substantial experience of writing, teaching law and appearing at court.

The story includes issues of identity and of whether the twins can communicate telepathically, and reveals their private language. There is the opportunity for comedy and also the fantasy of being able to pretend to be someone else, to share the positive sides of that character and avoid the negative. This is an interesting and entertaining story with tales of marine insurance thrown in.


David Pickup is a partner at Pickup & Scott Solicitors, Aylesbury