The time has come again to face an impossible task of narrowing the 117 books I have read into a top ten list. As always it was difficult to do but I have managed and I will list them in no particular order. Apart from my favourite book of the year which I will reveal at the end. You can see my review for each book by clicking on the title.
One night, Annie went missing. Disappeared from her own bed. There were searches, appeals. Everyone thought the worst. And then, miraculously, after forty-eight hours, she came back. But she couldn’t, or wouldn’t, say what had happened to her.
Something happened to my sister. I can’t explain what. I just know that when she came back, she wasn’t the same. She wasn’t my Annie.
I didn’t want to admit, even to myself, that sometimes I was scared to death of my own little sister.
Now. . .
The email arrived in my inbox two months ago. I almost deleted it straight away, but then I clicked OPEN:
I know what happened to your sister. It’s happening again . . .
With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. I enjoyed reading C.J. Tudor’s first novel The Chalk Man last year and have often heard about author nerves regarding follow up novels. In my opinion, she has nothing to worry about. I devoured this novel.
The Taking of Annie Thorne has everything I enjoy. A dual time frame novel where everything is slowly revealed, unofficial history which I have always loved, myths and legends, a spooky thread and some wonderful characters.
There are very few pleasant characters, even Joe Thorne had his faults. But his likeable traits made up for any faults he had. His devotion to Annie especially, was lovely to read. I think Annie was the character I could visualise the most. All the way through. The bullies in modern day are the children of the bullies from Joe’s school days. But another of the more appealing sides to him showed that he knew exactly how to handle them.
The story itself wasn’t what I expected it to be. It was a lot more sinister, I’m glad that I couldn’t experience the ‘odour’ that Joe could as I was reading. I felt nauseated just imagining it. Some of the characters took a while to show what they were really like. I was both surprised and shocked by what was revealed.
I have tried to find out if the Arnhill exists, I’ve not found it or anywhere it could be based on. I don’t usually look but the historical facts (or fiction) were fascinating and I wanted to know if any of the events did happen. Or if they were just imagination.
IF YOU ONLY READ ONE BOOK THIS YEAR MAKE IT THIS ONE. SOME GAMES ONLY END IN ONE WAY . . .
We all have fears we hide from. But in the end they will find us . . .
None of us ever agreed on the exact beginning.
Was it when we started drawing the chalk figures, or when they started to appear on their own?
Was it the terrible accident?
Or when they found the first body?
With thanks to the publisher for the copy received.
The Chalk Man is a crime novel that felt very refreshing. Yes, there are murders. but instead of being primarily focused on a police investigation, it is about how a group of friends who are connected to both murders in the 1980s and modern-day cope.
It is a book that I want to review without giving away any plot details. There is little detail in the synopsis and I feel that this is the best way to approach the novel.
Strong friendships feature especially when Eddie is twelve years old. There are first signs of love and loyal friendships but there is also insecurity and mistrust. I enjoyed reading about Eddie’s childhood, his attempts to avoid doing everything that his parents advised, the antics the group of friends got up to, the bullying from older children and the guilt felt over events that no twelve-year-old should ever have to think about.
Combined with the life that Eddie has in modern-day, fear of being like his father, disappointment with life and loneliness it is much more than just a crime novel. He is, however determined to find out what happened years earlier and why they appear to be happening again.This is a novel where every character had a personality and they all coped with life differently and the best way they could. Even if people got hurt. It’s also about secrets, some of which don’t get revealed until near the end.
An astonishing debut.