The Disappearance by Annabel Kantaria
|The Disappearance by Annabel Kantaria|
|Reviewer: Zoe Morris|
|Summary: Old but not out, Audrey is determined to reach her 70s her own way, even if this goes against the wants of her children. This is a unique story seamlessly blending India with Europe, and it's fabulous.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 384||Date: April 2016|
|External links: Author's website|
Audrey, the widowed mother of grown-up twins, is setting off for one last hurrah, taking her children on a Greek island cruise. It's quite a nice gesture for the pair, to whom she's starting to feel something of a burden, but she has the time and the means to treat them, so why shouldn't she? There may be more to it than that, though.
There is, you see, more to Audrey than her children may realise. As a girl in her 20s, she moved, alone, to India following the death of her parents. It was the 1970s and opportunities existed, but it was still a brave move. There she met her future husband, the twins' father, and in a whirlwind romance went from single girl to married mother in the blink of an eye. Moving back to the UK when the children were little, she became the perfect housewife, keeping the home neat and her husband, for the most part, happy. That is the woman the twins know. That is the woman she wanted them to know. But that is not all she is or was.
This book was a joy to read and I took pleasure in every twist and turn in the story as it moved back and forth between the heat and clamour of India and the more tranquil Cornish coast, telling Audrey's story then and now. It's remarkable how people see you as one thing but you can actually be quite another, and this came through in a stunning fashion as the voice changed from Lexi to her mother.
The story is building up to something, though we don't know what until they're all aboard the cruise and Audrey gathers everyone together to make a rather surprising announcement. It gives Lexi and John pause for thought, but as they're reeling from that news something else happens and suddenly there is an even greater mystery unfolding. And ohhhhh, the ending. The last page had me weeping. I hadn't seen it coming but it made perfect sense and I was so, so happy to be left with a bit of closure in an otherwise open-ended story.
I'd like to thanks the publishers for supplying this book. I read the first 80 pages while having my hair done in an effort to kill time at an overseas airport while I waited for the boy's flight to arrive, and while the holiday then took over and I had to put it down during the day, it only took me a few more hours of solid reading to finish. It's utterly compelling and although on paper I would have more in common with Lexi, I was Team Audrey all the way by the end.
For another read where it's really not clear exactly what's going on until close to the end, Pretty Baby by Mary Kubica is highly recommended. You might also enjoy Follow Me Down by Sherri Smith. We also have a review of The One that Got Away by Annabel Kantaria.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Disappearance by Annabel Kantaria at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Disappearance by Annabel Kantaria at Amazon.com.
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