This gets five big shiny stars from me! I won’t reiterate what it’s all about but suffice to say this is a haunting book but in a very human sense. The main character, Hazel, estranged mother of two daughters, Yvonne and Venetia, is very complex to say the least. Her life story, as it unfolds, is harrowing, with some scenes described that I don’t think I’ll ever forget – this writer is very Stephen King in that way, because I’ll never forget some passages from his books either. As strange a woman as Hazel may seem, however, I found myself sympathising with her and believe me, that is not an easy task. Her daughters are every bit as complex, and the relationship between all three troubled. Hazel arranges for a reunion after 15 years at the Lighthouse, purchased by her as somewhere to stay in the holidays many years before. The story twists this way and that as each interprets their past differently and then leads to a conclusion that I’d never have guessed and which has the shock quality of Sarah Water’s Fingersmith. Not an easy read, granted, as I’ve said some scenes are harrowing but it is a brilliant one with touches of genius throughout. Yep, it’s safe to say I loved it.
– Shani Struthers