Pub: Penguin Books
A gripping debut psychological thriller for fans of “The Silent Wife “and “The Wicked Girls” about two families in crisis and a holiday house swap gone terribly wrong
She would never have fit as neatly into the trunk of his own car. Limerick, Ireland: the O Brien family s driveway. American Oscar Harvey opens the trunk of his hosts car and finds the body of a woman, beaten and bloody. But let s start at the beginning.
Kate and Mannix O Brien live by Curragower Falls in Limerick, in a lovely house they can barely afford. Their autistic son Fergus is bullied at school, and their daughter Izzy blames herself, wishing she could protect him. Kate decides that her family needs a vacation, and is convinced her luck s about to change when she spots a gorgeous Manhattan apartment on a home-exchange website.
Hazel and Oscar Harvey and their two children live on Manhattan s Upper West Side. Though they seem successful and happy, Hazel has mysterious bruises, and Oscar is hiding things about his dental practice. They, too, need a change of pace. Hazel has always wanted her children to see her native Limerick, and the house swap offers a perfect chance to soothe two troubled marriages. But this will be anything but a perfect vacation. And the body in the trunk is just the beginning.”
There Is no need to cover the premise of this fabulous read as the blurb covers it brilliantly.
Siobhan Macdonald leads the reader up one path and then takes them on another, in what is a stylish and cleverly written tale. The plot is evidently designed to twist and turn and this psychological thriller covers love-affairs, deadly revenge and family secrets. Even the children have their own dilemmas and struggles.
The descriptions of both Ireland and Manhattan add to the charm of this novel and it is one with a realistic and original scenario.
In equal measures, it has mystery, scares and violence, although I do think Macdonald has missed a trick with the ending. I would have liked to have read about the O’Briens ‘run-in with the Bolgers in the next book and think this would have made a fabulous story about class warfare and division between the two families. Spike is a great character and I think he would have come into his own in this second book…..but that’s just me.
Twisted River moves at a moderate pace that grips and intrigues, it is also one that I am happy to recommend.