Thank you to Legend Press and Imogen Harris for the opportunity to be part of The Winter’s Child BlogTour.
Susannah and John appeared to have the perfect life until their 15 year old son, Joel disappears. Five years later, Susannah and John are no more, their marriage ripped apart. Susannah finds herself alone, reliant on her sister for support. She fills her time writing a blog warning others people of the perils of using mediums and psychics, just like she did, who prey on the vulnerable giving them the answers they want to hear.
When, on impulse Susannah visits a fortune teller at the Hull Fair who tells her son will return on Christmas Eve, she finally submerges into a deep and all consuming obssession to discover exactly what happened to her son.
If you are expecting a fast paced thriller/mystery then this is not the book for you if you like a book that delves into the depth of its characters then you are going to love The Winter’s Child.
Susannah is a complex character, a person who wanted marriage and children. Marriage was the easy part, having children very definitely the hard part. When it becomes obvious that having their own children is impossible John and Susannah adopt Joel. This is where the problem starts. Susannah is almost obsessive in her love for Joel, smothering and protecting him to the exclusion of her husband. As Joel becomes older and his truancy and drug taking increase so does Susannah’s efforts to cover up and protect him. I found her behaviour hugely annoying and frustrating to read, in fact I didn’t really like Susannah, but knew that the actions and behaviour that so annoyed me were essential to the story.
Parkin’s depiction of Susannah’s increasingly manic behaviour is brilliant and you begin to realise that something about Joel’s disappearance isn’t quite right. Yet Parkin keeps us guessing, drawing us further and further into Susannah’s downward spiral and the truth is finally revealed. I did guess but that in no way spoiled my enjoyment, such is the quality of Parkin’s skillful narrative.
Other characters play their part yet remain secondary to Susannah, and it would be too revealing of the plot if I was to write about them!
The novel is well researched and it was interesting to read how some psychics and mediums operate, how they can hook seemingly intelligent but vulnerable people giving them hope where perhaps there isn’t any.
Cassandra Parkin has written a hugley atmospheric and dark novel that will stay with you long after you have turned the last page.
The Winter’s Child By Cassandra Parkin. Legend Press September 15th 2017
About the author.
Cassandra Parkin grew up in Hull and now lives in East Yorkshire. New World Fairy Tales won the 2011 Scott Prize for Short Stories. her previous novels include. The Beach House and The Summer We All Ran Away. The Winter’s Child is her fourth novel.