I am really pleased to be reviewing this book and sharing it with you all today. Not only is it written by a lovely local author and set in an area I am very familiar with, I was really lucky to be able to attend it’s pre-launch party in Colchester Essex back in November and am hopefully meeting back up with Lesley again later this month for it’s launch at Waterstones. We had a great evening back in November, meeting up with other bloggers, book sellers, as well as Alison from Transworld Books and Lesley herself. Great food, great company and an evening full of book chat!!!
It’s been 192 days, seven hours and fifteen minutes since her last drink. Now Astrid is trying to turn her life around.
Having reluctantly moved back in with her mother, in a quiet seaside town away from the temptations and painful memories of her life before, Astrid is focusing on her recovery. She’s going to meetings. Confessing her misdeeds. Making amends to those she’s wronged.
But someone knows exactly what Astrid is running from. And they won’t stop until she learns that some mistakes can’t be corrected.
Some mistakes, you have to pay for . . .
In Lesley Kara’s second novel, we travel back to Flinstead and meet our main character, Astrid. A recovering alcoholic, she has moved back in with her mother. She has left London and all of it’s temptations for one last attempt to get her life back. She seems to have an extra determination this time, maybe because she feels she has pushed her mum far enough and she has been given her last chance.
However, and it’s a big however, as you read and learn more about Astrid, you begin to learn that there is a very dark secret she is also running from and with the wonderful use of small passages inserted into the book from what appears like a very dangerous stalker, it seems Astrid’s attempt at recovery is to be severely challenged.
A brilliant opening, with such menace the first page of this book sure does grab your attention!! This tension carries on through out and keeps the reader engaged as you learn more about Astrid’s past and present mental health and drink addiction. The author handles these topics wonderfully well with some great descriptive scenes and with the well researched details of the AA meetings and their 12 step program. I found out many things about this method of recovery I knew nothing about.
Once again, as in The Rumour, the other characters in the story are well thought out and add a lot to the story, not just in the plot but also by bringing in another large topic of the book, grief. The lose of a loved one such as Josh’s Mother and those of other characters add another dimension to the story. The town of ‘Flinstead’ is wonderfully used in the book and makes a nice connection back to the first novel, it even gets a little mention!
The plot slows down when needed but has pace and numerous red herrings to keep you guessing where the story will go next and with it’s final twists and dramas towards the end of the story it makes for a very satisfying end. A great read.
A massive thank you to Alison Barrow and the publishers Transworld Books/Penguin Random House for my proof copy and my invite to a great pre-launch evening!!
Who Did You Tell? is released today!!!!