Reading the initial bits gave me such a huge adrenaline kick that I was like a book junkie wanting to be stuck to the book. And Clare Boyd didn’t disappoint me. Oh man, she took me on a rollercoaster ride. I generally can’t tolerate rides, but this one, I didn’t want to get off.
Till halfway through….
When I suddenly realized that the book has derailed, it didn’t know where the it was going. The story is about a 10 year old child, Rosie, having tantrums to the point of hitting the mother and screeching her lungs out. The neighbor, Mira, hears this, calls the police, and the story rolls henceforth. The mother, Gemma, tries her level best to maintain a balance, till she starts losing her own mental balance. And then things go wrong, for both the characters and the readers.
The story which started strong should have ended strong. The author, Clare Boyd, promised me a journey with a thunderous finale, but all I got was…. Nothing.
I didn’t like the answers given by the author as a finale to the story. It was too ambiguous. There were unanswered questions. I rushed through 80% of the book, leaving all other work, and I was left dejected… What I was promised in the blurb, didn’t happen till the book reached the end. The blurb was misinforming. It put a damper on my reading mojo.
The first half of the book is excellent. There is a lot of action happening, the author maintains the tension throughout. But in this attempt to maintain a fast pace, tension biting atmosphere, the author loses control on the plot. I find it very ironic that the main character, Gemma, does not even like being a mother, but is pregnant with her third child. She is unable to find a work-life balance, yet takes on more and more responsibilities. And the most shocking was, she has a change of heart suddenly, after a few days of crying, she loves the responsibilities of motherhood. To me that is unbelievable… Both mother Gemma and daughter Rosie required extreme counseling, they are both extremely weird and they call that love. I am not even mentioning the other characters because they are insipid.
But instead of the neighbor reporting the mother, I think the child needed reporting for her night and day kind of moods. The mother had her own dangerous, dark thoughts…
Motherhood is overwhelming… But this is taking things too far. I read the book with an excitement and eagerness and I was left with a hollow feeling of wasted time.
I received an ARC from NetGalley and publisher, Bookouture, and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.
My rating : 3 stars
About the Author
Clare lives with her husband and their two daughters in Surrey, where her little green shed at the bottom of the garden provides a haven for her writing life. She soon settled down to a career in television, both in documentaries and drama at the BBC and Channel Four, where her love of storytelling took hold.
Clare’s debut novel, Little Liar, will be published by Bookouture in February 2018.
To the outside world, Gemma Bradley has it all – a doting husband, high-flying career and two delightful kids – but inside the four walls of her tastefully renovated home, she is a mother at her wits’ end.
When a child’s scream pierces the night, Gemma’s neighbour does what anyone would do: she calls the police. She wants to make sure that Rosie, the little girl next door, is safe.
Gemma knows she hasn’t done anything wrong, but the more she fights to defend the family she loves, the more her flawless life begins to crumble around her. Is the carefully guarded secret she’s been keeping suddenly in danger of breaking free?
When Rosie disappears, Gemma thinks she only has herself to blame. That is, until she discovers that Rosie has been keeping dark secrets of her own in a pink plastic diary.
Distraught and terrified, Gemma doesn’t know where to turn. The only thing she knows is that her daughter’s life is in danger…
Publication date : 1st Feb 2018
Publisher : Bookouture
Language : English
Available on Amazon
Empty premise, disappointing end