Fifteen year old Charlotte is lying in a hospital bed in a coma. She stepped out in front of a bus. Her mother Sue is convinced that this was not an aFifteen year old Charlotte is lying in a hospital bed in a coma. She stepped out in front of a bus. Her mother Sue is convinced that this was not an accident. She doesn't believe that Charlotte was distracted by her phone, or her iPod, or someone across the street. Sue thinks that Charlotte tried to take her own life. She has a reason to think that because she read her daughter's diary, she read the entry that says "keeping this secret is killing me".
Sue is determined to find out the truth, to find out what this secret is. She's suspicious of everyone - of her husband, of Charlotte's boyfriend, her best friend, her teachers, she knows that someone knows something but nobody is talking.
Sue is a troubled, nervous woman. Wife of a Member of Parliament, mother to the beautiful Charlotte, but she appears almost neurotic at times, she's paranoid and suspicious. Her husband and step-son obviously worry about her too, they lived through Sue's breakdown in the past. Are her suspicions real? Is Sue having another mental breakdown? Is she reliable? Can we trust her?
Alongside the main thread of the story, the author has included diary entries dating back twenty years. This is Sue's past story, written in her own words and tell the story of her relationship with James, her ex-boyfriend. It is these diary entries that explain to the reader just why Sue acts as she does today. Sue was broken by James, broken almost beyond repair, and although she has managed to make a new life, it's clear that inside her there are still some pieces that haven't yet healed.
The Accident is a tense, tightly plotted and incredibly compelling story. There were times during the story that I felt chilled by the menace, so much so that I actually had to put the book down for a while. The story builds, the pace quickens and the suspense is quite electrifying.
C L Taylor has dealt with some disturbing issues within The Accident. The story is steeped in secrets and lies and how these can impact on relationships with those closest to us. Using stark language that doesn't hide anything, the reader is exposed to violence in the form of physical attacks, sexual assault and most chillingly; emotional abuse. Having once been in a relationship with a man who was extremely emotionally abusive, it was these passages that affected me the most - the authenticity of the writing, the exact mannerisms and words - this is extremely impressive writing.
Incredibly convincing, The Accident is a gripping read that will stay in my head for a long time. ...more
I have been a huge fan of Carlos Ruiz Zafon's novels for adults for many years. The Shadow of the Wind is one of my all time favourite books, it's verI have been a huge fan of Carlos Ruiz Zafon's novels for adults for many years. The Shadow of the Wind is one of my all time favourite books, it's very different to my usual read, but holds a special place in my heart - for many reasons.
The Watcher in the Shadows is the third of the novels that Carlos Ruiz Zafon wrote for younger readers at the beginning of his career in the 1990s, and was recently published here in paperback.
Irene Sauvelle moves with her mother and her younger brother to a large house on the coast of Normandy. At first the family seem to have fallen on their feet. Irene's mother will be the housekeeper for Lazarus Jann. Lazarus is a toymaker, and his house is full of weird and wonderful creations - the perfect place for children to explore ...... or is it? As Irene falls in love with local boy Ismael, strange things happen. Young girls disappear, shadows appear and menacing, magical forces cause chaos in the forest.
Although the target market is young adults, The Watcher in the Shadows is also perfect for the adult market, especially for those readers who like some gothic horror with some clever creepiness thrown in for good measure. Add that to a great storyline and Carlos Ruiz Zafon's magical writing ability and this is the perfect book to read on a dark evening .... make sure the doors are locked though, as you may find yourself glancing over your shoulder more than once!...more