Sunday, 24 May 2015

Daughter - Jane Shemilt Book Review

I've been dabbling in the genre of mystery/crime/psychological thriller far more frequently than normal as of late. This time, it's due to Book Club. Yes, I bit the bullet and have set up my own at work! It's really exciting and I'll do a post about it exclusively at a later date. One of my best friends, my step mum and somebody at work had already read Daughter and all really enjoyed it. Following my disdain for how unrealistic Gone Girl was, I wasn't sure how it would fare but, I'm glad I gave it a chance.

Jane Shemilt is an English author from Bristol whose husband works in the medical field. Daughter is her debut novel and features a family where parents Jenny and Ted work in the medical field and...you guessed it, live in Bristol. Their children, twins Theo and Ed and yunger daughter Naomi, are left to their own devices a great deal due to the busy and demanding nature of their parents vocations. Naomi disappears and as the parents and police try and track her down, it becomes increasingly obvious how much they didn't know about their daughter, or sons, their interests or the company they keep.

Daughter is quite slow to start with but once I hit the half way mark, I needed to know what happened and blitzed it over a late night/early morning one weekend - I struggled to put it down. There were times however, where I wanted Shemilt to stop with the long descriptive prose and get down to the nitty-gritty. I found this novel believable. It's quite emotive and from a women's point of view so potentially more appealing to a female reader. Daughters explores the dynamics of a family, where both parents are in busy full time work and how this affects the children. The finger is semi-pointed at the mother, the reader is challenged to think about whether this is fair and as an advocate of feminism I believe this to be an important channel to explore/think about.

I really enjoyed Daughter a lot and gave it a 4 star rating on Good Reads. I would recommend it to anyone who loves this genre. The ending is innovative and has you wondering to the very last page.
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