"Even when the rainbow seems to pass right by me....I'm still finding Gold in the clouds....."

01 November 2015

2015 Book Review #39: The Daughter


Thrilling, mysterious, heart-wrenching, perplexing, haunting.

Those are the first adjectives that come to my mind this afternoon, now that I have finished this novel.  It is the author's very first novel and I truly hope she plans on writing more. It's phenomenal.


A family of 5 lives in Bristol, England.  Dad's name is Ted and he is a neurosurgeon...a brilliant and successful doctor.  Mom is Jenny and she is a family doctor.  They have a set of 17 year old twins named Theo (who is an artist) and Ed (who unbeknownst to them is struggling with a drug addiction and feels inferior to his twin and younger sister).  Naomi is the baby..she is just 15 years old, a good student and an actress with the lead role in the school musical.  Little does the family know, but Naomi has been harboring many secrets.  She is not what she appears to be.

One evening, after the 2nd performance of the musical, Naomi doesn't come home.  All of a sudden, this family that looks so put together on the outside, begins to unravel.  

The police are called and an investigation begins. Kidnapping and murder are of course the first things everyone suspects.  But after several months of an intense search, it appears that these scenarios are not what happened.

One year later, Jenny, now living alone in Dorset, in her mother's summer cottage on the sea, begins to speculate about what truly happened.  There are little clues she has begun to discover.  And Ed, now in rehab, has admitted to his mother that Naomi was not all that the parents believed her to be.  What does he know?

Naomi's boyfriend James comes forward and confesses that they have had a sexual relationship for months and that Naomi was about 10 weeks pregnant when she disappeared.  This puts a new spin on things!  James also says Naomi started acting different around him...often not bothering with him.  Her best friend Nikita also knows something..........she confesses to seeing Naomi with an older guy.

Jenny and Ted find out that a drug dealer has been involved in Ed and Naomi's lives.  And this drug dealer is the same man out for revenge against Ted because screwed up an operation on a young girl...the man's relative!  But did Naomi really disappear with this man??  Was it by force or did she want to leave her comfortable life-style?

Jenny begins to trace various clues left by Naomi and that she really didn't know her teenager at all.  What is the whole truth?? And what about she and Ted?  Are they ever going to be able to repair their marriage that began to unravel the night Naomi disappeared and Ted confessed to having an affair??

Will they ever find Naomi's body....or Naomi alive??


This book is absolutely thrilling.  It is a page-turning, "stay up late and read" kind of a story.

First of all, the character development is absolutely perfect.  I felt a deep wrenching of my heart when reading about Jenny and the evening that Naomi was discovered to be missing.  I felt such sadness for Theo and Ed when they shared their thoughts to Jenny and Ted about the parenting style used and about how neglected they felt due to both parents' busy medical careers.

From the opening page to the most shocking ending, I was drawn in to this plot.

It is a gripping piece of literature.

The themes in the story seem to be centered around that ever so difficult balance of motherhood and career.  Of raising teenagers in this often brutal world and today's culture.

It is all about loss, and grief....of betrayal and harmful secrets.

It is about how choices we often make, can have a ripple effect in our families, our communities, our world.

I would love to see a sequel to this story...especially given the ending...which I will NOT reveal because I don't want to spoil it for you!!

In my opinion, this book is appropriate for ages 17 and older (due to content).

On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the highest, I rate this a 10.

1 comment:

Susanne said...

Going on my list!!