Sunday 17 July 2016

Her Turn to Cry - Chris Curran

Twelve years ago Joycie Todd’s mother abandoned her. But what if she never really left? A tautly written psychological suspense novel, perfect for fans of B.A. Paris and Alex Lake.
London, 1965. Top model Joycie Todd lives a glittering life with photographer Marcus Blake. But her childhood tells a different story…
When she was eleven, Joycie’s mother disappeared. Run away with another man, so everyone says. But Joycie can’t forget the thumps she heard in the night, or the bloodstained rug hidden under the bed. A rug that was gone the next day.
Twelve years later, Joycie has left her past behind. But when an old friend dies, Joycie is left a letter beseeching her to find out the truth. Unable to keep the door locked any longer, Joycie sets out to discover why her mother left her – if she ever really did.
As she travels to the shabby seaside towns of her childhood, Joycie soon finds that it’s not just her mother who vanished all those years ago. Joycie knows the disappearances are connected, she just doesn’t know how. But there’s someone out there who does – and they will do anything to keep it buried.

What did I think?

This was a really enjoyable, well-written novel and I'm not sure what genre I would put it in; it is so multi-faceted.  I didn't find it as gripping as I expected but it was certainly an addictive read as the story slowly unfolds and Joycie uncovers all of her family secrets.

In 1965, Joycie appears to have it all - she's a well known model, living with her photographer boyfriend, Marcus.  Behind the scenes though, Joycie is a damaged individual, scarred by events that happened over 12 years ago.  Joycie is part of a theatre family in the 1950's.  Her Dad, Charlie Todd, and obnoxious Sid Sergeant are a popular theatre act who have no end of admirers waiting at the stage door.  When Joycie's Mum suddenly disappears, the rumour mill claims that she has run away with one of her many fancy-men. Joycie isn't so sure as none of her Mum's clothes have been taken and she found a bloodstained rug hidden under the bed...or did she imagine it as the next day it had gone?

Without giving away any of the story, I found it really interesting and disturbing to see how events from Joycie's childhood had moulded her into the person she has become.  From reading her story, it's no surprise to see that she hides behind the facade of model 'Orchid'. To the outside world, Orchid is confident and beautiful but behind closed doors Joycie is afraid to let Marcus get close to her.  I felt as if she was a cracked vase that had been superglued together but at risk of being broken into a million pieces if she's hugged too hard.

Joycie does turn out to be tougher that I thought as she uncovers all of the skeletons in her family's closet.  Skeletons that Chris Curran has revealed with tact and sensitivity, whilst being true to the era when such skeletons, through fear, remained firmly in the closet.

Her Turn to Cry is a very addictive read; the thread throughout the story is the disappearance of Joycie's Mum but there's so much more going on.  I felt that stones were being overturned that could have absolutely anything underneath them and as the story went on, I felt Joycie getting stronger and really evolving into the woman she was always destined to be.

I received this e-book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

My rating:

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