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This book was so annoying that, although I tried to get through it, I had to rescue myself from my futile effort to find out what the heck the story was at Chapter Eight. It is too wordy and full of unnecessary descriptives to a fault. It made me feel I was wasting time. On to another book!
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Tread carefully dear reader, all is not what it seems!
A slow start, in fact I began to think it might be a tad to "literary" for me, and maybe a bit too intellectual as well. You know, like one of those prize winning books we think we ought to read but never do.
However, don't be fooled.
The writing is so good that before I knew it I was getting mad at one of the characters, you know it has to be good when you are getting mad at a fictional person, so I would advise you to stick with it, it is so worth it.
At times I didn't much like Bella, it was in the way she behaved towards the family that she so desperately wanted to know. She seemed to have no understanding of human needs nor did she seem able to recognise the feelings of others.
Yet how could she?
She had a cloistered childhood, raised as she was under the smothering wings of an abnormally protective mother and a complicit father. She was home schooled and so never mixed with other children. Her husband David isolated and manipulated her. Bella had never had the chance to acquire social skills.
It happened when Bella and her husband were at her childhood home to attend her mothers funeral. Henry, her father, had a long held secret to tell Bella but he simply could not bear to speak the words, and so he informed her in the most horrific of ways.
With nobody left but David, Bella takes the secret and runs, she tells David nothing, he doesn't know the secret nor does he know her destination.
The secret has led her to Cornwall where she seeks out and finds the Tremaynes, Dawn and her sick and totally dependant mother Alice, they live in humble conditions and in not so genteel poverty. Dawn accepts no help and is her mothers full time carer.
Dawn has her own secrets and though she knows who Bella is, she is not willing to allow her to impose upon them. Bella is not welcome.
There is one particular chapter that stays in my head; Dawn has a strong reaction to Bellas behaviour and the way the author conveys those feelings is masterful, each well chosen word conveys Dawns thoughts and feelings so perfectly.
For me, it is was when Bella reached Cornwall that the real story began, the secret had been revealed, or had it?
There is so much more to be discovered....
I loved reading about Cornwall, I was born and raised there and was delighted to hear some of the old expressions included. It was good to hear mentions of the Cornish Language, especially of the attempts of coffee shop owner from "up country" to learn it which added a few light hearted moments to the story.
And, of course, to be reminded of the legend of Morveren, the maid from the sea "the Mermaid of Zennor"
Kate Rawson captures the beautiful musical lilt and cadence of the West Cornwall accent perfectly. It's rare to hear an actor produce such a good Cornish accent and I marvelled at her authenticity, then I discovered she spent the first years of her life in Cornwall!
Kate gives each character, male and female, a distinct and easily identifiable voice making it easy for the listener to follow the story.
Her sensitive and skilled interpretation of the authors beautiful writing immerses the listener in the story adding an extra dimension of pleasure to the experience.
This audiobook is my own copy.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Wow, what a great book - the way this story is written just made me want to stop everything else and just immerse myself in it. The characters are extremely believable and I went through a whole gamut of emotions. The audiobook was fantastic and well read by Kate Rawson.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful
Where does In Her Wake rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
Amongst the best.
What about Kate Rawson’s performance did you like?
Her narration was excellent.
Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?
I rarely have strong emotional reactions to a book, but this story at various times made me feel sad, shocked and happy.
Any additional comments?
This story is original and very well written. In particular, the dialogue is beautifully composed (many, otherwise good books, fall down on the quality of the dialogue). The characters, many of whom are quite disturbed, are richly drawn. Themes of loss, grief, psychological control, domestic abuse, including child physical abuse and despair are explored here. However, the author writes with a light touch, such that despite these themes, the story meanders gently throughout and makes it an easy read/listen. I really didn't want to put this one down.
12 of 13 people found this review helpful
After losing both her parents in quick succession, Bella Campbell’s life is further turned upside down when she reads a letter left to her by her father, which tells her that she is not Henry and Elaine Campbell’s biological daughter, but that her “real” family lives in Cornwall. Having grown up cloistered in an old vicarage, home-schooled and without any family and friends other than her parents, Bella has never had the opportunity to truly grow up. Instead, she married a much older man who took over from her mother, controlling everything Bella does, from the food she eats to the clothes she wears. Now that all she has ever believed to be the truth has gone up in smoke, Bella must rise out of the ashes and set off on her own to discover her true origins – and ultimately discover herself.
In Her Wake had an intriguing premise, which soon drew me into the storyline. However, this is NOT a psychological thriller. Whilst there is an element of mystery in the story, the reader finds out the truth very early on, and what follows is a slow-burning family drama of family members re-united after years apart, and the struggles they face in getting to know one another and overcoming the trauma of the past. The setting on the Cornish coast was atmospheric and added a wonderful armchair-travel element that brought the story to life for me, and I enjoyed the emotional turmoil Bella finds herself in and her journey of self-discovery. However, at times I found the story a bit slow and repetitive and thought it needed a bit of editing to move things along (especially Bella’s “dreams”, which really added nothing to the story for me). I found myself waiting for bit more action or an element of surprise to spice things up, which did not eventuate.