The Orphans by Annemarie Neary
|The Orphans by Annemarie Neary|
|Reviewer: Zoe Morris|
|Summary: A little bit elongated, but an interesting story about a simple disappearance that may not have been so simple after all.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 352||Date: July 2017|
|External links: Author's website|
Jess and Sparrow (Ro) are just children when they are playing on the beach one day and turn round to find their parents vanished and their whole life changed in an instant. It's the sort of childhood trauma that effects people in different ways. Jess goes to one extreme, studying hard, becoming a successful lawyer, building the kind of stability for her new family that she craved ever since that day. And Ro….doesn't. He does almost the opposite, never putting down roots, floating from place to place, woman to woman, free as the wind. The lives of the siblings don't cross much, but when an item belonging to their mother resurfaces, so does the case and the interest in her disappearance.
This is an interesting, slightly long winded, thriller that goes far and wide. We start on the understanding that the children's parents are clearly dead, albeit with very little understanding of what and who took them to this end. Jess can accept this but Ro has other ideas, and starts to introduce doubts to her mind. It's painful to pick at a wound like that, especially when chances are it will just have to heal over again without any new information coming to life, but Ro has a special way around his sister, a special draw on their shared DNA, and that can be quite painful.
This book weaves suspense and a murder (or maybe murder) mystery with family drama. It isn't quite the psychological thriller some books are, but it certainly has elements to keep you guessing. I found it a little too long, and felt like it wandered at parts, but it was still interesting. The grief of the tragedy is raw, even all these years later, and I found Jess very easy to empathise with. On the surface she has it all (the job, the husband, the child, the house) but she knows it's precariously balanced and that one wrong move, could bring the house of cards tumbling down. She feels pathetically grateful that her nanny is there for her daughter, even though she doesn't always like or trust her and, you get the feeling, might much prefer to be a stay at home mother. The reappearance of Ro does little to help her sanity, but he's her brother and she cannot just ignore him. I cared less for Ro as a character and could understand his brother in law's contempt, but he and his ways were integral to the story so I could tolerate his presence.
I'd like to thank the publishers for sending us a copy to review. It is a pretty decent read if you stick with it. For more twists and turns, set just across the other side of London, Under Your Skin by Sabine Durrant is recommended.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Orphans by Annemarie Neary at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy The Orphans by Annemarie Neary at Amazon.com.
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