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I so hope that Julia Rochester writes many more books, for this was a glorious novel that was an absolute pleasure to listen to. Its plot had more twists and turns than a spiral staircase and a cast of characters that were all at different points engaging and utterly repellent.Morwenna and Corwin are twins that grow up in an ancestral home with mismatched parents and a paternal grandfather. The twins are fircely loyal to one another and inhabit their own little world; Morwenna tends to snobbery and selfish, judgemental behaviour whilst Corwin is the idealistic golden boy to all who know him. But their personal relationhip is overly close and intense and appears odd to all who know them, even their parents. Matthew their grandfather sits at the heart of the family, loathed by the twins' mother and at odds with his son over the sale of family land. Matthew paints, over a period of years, a map of family history relating to Thornton, the family seat. It is this map that helps the twins to unlock a devastating mystery after their father falls off a cliff one evening, just as they are about to leave school and make their way in the world. But is it all as clear cut as things initially appear?Beautifully plotted and written. Narrated very skillfully. Utterly believable. A tour de force. Blissful.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
Essentially the tale of a twin brother and sister, almost a ghost story, but not quite. Diana Athill noted in her review in the Guardian that as an experienced reader and reviewer of fiction she can nearly always guess the outcome, but here, she said, she failed. I think the likely outcome does begin to show about two thirds of the way through, but this does not diminish the excitement right up until closure, which rounds out the tale very satisfactorily.
Avita Jay reads with great skill, a marvelous performance.
And some reviewers didn't like this book!? Perhaps a little patience to allow the writer to put the characters and the plot in the right places so that it builds to such effect.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful