From the Back Cover:
Widowed London social worker Georgina “Georgie” Jefferson battles guilt and public disgrace when one of her charges, abused five-year-old Angela Hopkins, is beaten to death. She retreats to Furze Pen, an isolated Devon cottage that once belonged to Stephen, the deceased brother she never knew. In this refuge, she hopes to learn something about Stephen. But the hostility of her neighbors and a series of chilling incidents—including the disappearance of her dog and a stranger lurking around the cottage at night—disturb Georgie’s desperate search for peace. As winter closes in, Georgie must discover who or what threatens her most . . . the tragedies of her past or a new danger from her tormented present.
Once again, master of suspense Gillian White depicts the dreadful, dependent relationship that can sprout between love and violence.
My Two Cents:
This story had a great many twists and turns, most dealing with the history and experiences of the main character, Georgie. Her life was a series of mysteries that are not fully known to the reader until the very end of the book. There are plenty of thrills and chills, however, as she moves into her brother’s cottage after his death. The cast of characters she meets are interesting, and I felt I knew every one of them from my own life.
Gillian White is able to paint a vivid picture of Furze Pen Cottage, down to the damp cold winter in the lonely hollow. I could see the gross, moldy shower, and feel the cold wind coming in through every crack. She really brought her characters to life, for the most part. I had an issue with the mother at the end, and felt that she had been described as a “keep up with the Jones’” type, when she had more deep seeded issues that were not discovered by the reader, but revealed at the end without prior insight. The only real issue I have is a feeling that the conclusion is a bit rushed. Although, I really enjoyed how the author concluded Georgie’s story, I felt just a little lost as to how she got there with the information provided throughout the book.
I give it and a