EXCERPT: ALEX: Mist had begun to gather all along the edge of the woods – the Whispering Woods – as day slipped into night. When I’d arrived, I’d parked the Land Rover beside other cars, but now it stood alone near the looming trees, which looked like they were floating behind the carpark as tendrils of mist crept through them like smoky fingers.
There was something nameless but intensely intimidating in the air; something about the height and thickness of the trees, the twisted trunks just visible as I hurried to the car; something ancient and mythical and utterly uninviting. The surface of the dark pool by the gates was also seething with mist now, and the strange bottles stacked along the wall no longer glinted, the weak autumn sun having given up for the day.
ABOUT ‘THE PARENTS’: Moving to this village was supposed to be a fresh start for me and my thirteen-year-old son Harry. After the tragic death of my husband, it was a chance to leave everything bad behind and make better memories at Primrose Cottage, the postcard-perfect house with honeysuckle around the door.
However, things haven’t exactly been easy since we arrived, and after what we’ve been though, I’m scared of letting anyone new into our lives.
But when one of the local dads asks Harry to join the weekend sports club, I find myself saying yes. The smile on my son’s face gives me hope that I might have made the right decision in uprooting our lives.
All the other parents seem so kind in welcoming me into the fold. At least, they are to begin with… Until someone begins anonymously exposing secrets about everyone in the group.
As betrayals surface and the claws come out, I see how imperfect these people really are; and how far they’ll go to hide the truth. Then when one of the parents ends up dead at the end of a party, I realise that it’s not just lies and scandal they’re covering up.
Too late, I realise that I should have stayed away…
MY THOUGHTS: I should have stayed away too.
At 47%, when I found myself thinking that I would rather go get a tooth pulled, I closed the covers for the final time.
This author can write; there’s no disputing that, and had she continued in the vein of the extract above, I would still be avidly flipping pages. Instead we get cardboard cutout characters with absolutely no depth, who fancy themselves as WAGS, and a bunch of wannabe footballers pushing their failed aspirations down the throats of the under 14 team.
Mystery? Who’s behind the ‘revealing’ video clips that are tearing apart the lives of the footballers enclave? Don’t care. Mysterious death? Hasn’t happened yet, and I am not interested enough to wait around for it.
And I never want to hear the term ‘babs’ again – unless it’s an abbreviation of Barbara. What is it, anyway? ‘Babe’ I can understand, but ‘babs’?
Sorry, but The Parents gets a resounding thumbs down from me.
The Parents by Claire Seeber may well be a book that you enjoy, so please check out a selection of the more positive reviews if you are considering reading it.
I: @claireseeberauthor @bookouture
T: @claireseeber @Bookouture
#contemporaryfiction #domesticdrama #mystery
THE AUTHOR: After a stab at being a (bad) actress, best-selling author Claire directed factual TV for years, before writing the first of eight psychological thrillers, including the chart-topping Never Tell and The Stepmother. In 2012, she was nominated for a CWA Dagger for He Does Not Always See Her. She also writes for stage and screen, features for newspapers such as The Guardian & The Independent and is a qualified Gestalt therapist, when she’s not writing or herding feral kids (hers) or animals.
DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Bookouture via Netgalley for providing a digital ARC of The Parents by Claire Seeber for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.
For an explanation of my rating system please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the about page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com
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