Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Fifteen year old Naomi was a smashing success in the school play. Her interpretation of Maria in West Side Story surprised her parents with the level of maturity and seduction. Both doctors, her parents are successful and busy and preoccupied but their lives are shattered when Naomi doesn't come home one night after the play. Involving the police immediately, Jenny becomes obsessed with the search for her daughter. As the clues are uncovered, it becomes painfully clear that Jenny doesn't really know her well-behaved, smart daughter at all. In fact, she might not know any of the members of her family.
I was instantly intrigued in The Daughter by Jane Shemilt and found the story thrilling and frightening, especially as a mother. Going back and forth between the period of time when Naomi went missing and a year later was a bit distracting but I adjusted quickly and it was an effective way of foreshadowing and dropping clues.
Jenny is a fascinating character because she is not a helicopter parent. She loves her children but has her career too and has allowed her children a great degree of independence. This perspective is interesting because Jenny ends up dealing with a lot of guilt and her children blame her absence for many of their problems.
The plot moves along at a fairly rapid pace though there are a few odd characters thrown in to Jenny's story a year after the disappearance that seem out of place and unnecessary. Without giving anything away, the ending becomes completely wonky. The entire novel crumbles around the ridiculous conclusion.
The Daughter by Jane Shemilt is published by William Morrow and released in March 2015. It was the book club read for our local book club and is one of She Reads books of Spring.
**I received a complimentary copy of The Daughter from the publishers. No other compensation was received. All opinions are my own.**
Posted by Utah Mom at 3:00 AM