About The Book
Darkness lies at the heart of this family…
In 1959 Milly starts her new life as a housemaid at Rutherford House, working for the aristocratic Rutherford-Percy clan. Entranced by her new mistress, Vivienne, she becomes deeply embroiled in the household and the keeper of dark secrets the family conceals beneath the mansion’s grand exterior.
In the present day, Christie is working as a psychiatric nurse when she meets troubled patient Lillian Percy, Vivienne’s granddaughter and heiress to Rutherford House. They soon bond over the loss of their mothers
– Lillian’s died when she was a child; Christie’s mysteriously disappeared over twenty years ago – and Christie finds herself increasingly fascinated by
Lillian’s family and their imposing ancestral home.
As Christie learns more about the Rutherford-Percys, she finds a shocking clue that could help her uncover what happened to her own mother. Desperate for answers, Christie puts her job, her family and even her very life on the line. But how much of the truth does she really want to know?
With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. I always enjoy a novel with more than one narrator, I find it adds to the intrigue and provides differing views of the same situation. And in this novel I found it worked really well, covering three generations where initially I couldn’t even begin to work out the connection.
Christie was a character I adored. I had a lot of appreciation for her honesty, her approach to her career and the evident loss she felt concerning the disappearance of her mother. She crossed the line a little with building a friendship with Lilian but she did still have her best interests at heart and tried to maintain a professional relationship. You saw a lot more of her vulnerability with her relationship with OJ, a character who made me smile a lot.
But there wasn’t just her that the reader got to know well. There was Duncan during the 1980s, probably the one who I had the most sympathy for as the way he was manipulated was revealed and Milly from the 1960s, the more I read about her the less I liked. But strangely, there wasn’t really anything I could put my finger on. I just found her a little too controlling and too familiar for an employee.
The house itself was just like I imagined one that had run out of money to be. Areas gradually being closed adding to a claustrophobic and cold atmosphere. Nowhere that anybody would call home, I couldn’t imagine a less happy home. My feelings didn’t change as I got towards the end, if anything they increased as the truth was revealed.
The ending was a shock, just before everything was revealed I had decided that I knew what happened to Christie’s mother and those connected to her. I couldn’t have been more wrong. The real outcome was much more sinister and captivating than anything I imagined.
A fantastic novel with characters that felt real