I have such mixed feelings about this slow-burning thriller about obsessive, all-consuming hate and the quest for revenge.
I’ll start with the best parts. The writing is impeccable. The descriptions really paint a picture of the setting without being overly ornate. The dialogue was well done, as was the pacing. Even though some parts are slower than others, I was never bored nor sure of what was coming next. I also appreciated how the story was woven together, starting with Ellen’s perspective, switching to Vic’s, and interspersing snippets from Ellen’s book.
The characters are what didn’t work as well for me. All of the characters either came across as unreliable or one-dimensional. Ellen’s portrayal was the most challenging for me. As a mother myself, I wanted so much to be able to relate to Ellen, but from the start, something seemed off about her. Vic’s chapters do add insight, but I never could connect with her. I think it was because I never could quite envision her as a loving mother to Lucas and Freya, even before the events that take place that destroy her.
Overall, I would recommend this book and this author. I have wanted to read one of Candlish’s books for some time now and, for the most part, the writing and storytelling lived up to the hype.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a free e-ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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