The opening chapter of The Silent Daughter sees Chris Morrison living through dark times. His wife Marie has had an accident while running and is in a coma in hospital. Their son Mikey has arrived but he just can’t get a hold of their daughter Ruth and you get the impression that their relationship may be somewhat strained. Even more intriguingly, just when you are feeling sympathy for Chris, there is a hint about something dreadful which happened 15 years previously ‘That Day’, a suggestion that Chris was present at the scene of a violent act. So that was that, I was hooked!
Chris is convinced that Marie’s fall was no accident and with it seeming like no-one has seen or been in contact Ruth for almost 9 months, the police become involved. Chris is a journalist and being in that line of work, isn’t content to let the police get on and do their job. He just has to do his own digging too, helped by friend and colleague Sandy. I felt this really added to the story as the investigation was being carried out in part by someone really closely involved.
There were occasional chapters throughout the book from an unknown person who clearly knows Ruth well, and knows exactly what has happened to her. This really enhanced the mystery and made me very intrigued. Who was this person? What kind of a relationship did they have with Ruth? And what had they done to her? I tried to pick up on clues but all my theories were disproved. There came a point in the book when I realised the author had misled me in a very clever way, so clever that I had to go back and reread some sections in a completely different light.
I must just mention briefly that I loved the atmospheric setting of Edinburgh particularly its Old Town, and it was great to see Portobello get a few mentions too!
So how many secrets can one family keep? Rather a lot it seems. The final few chapters were very insightful and surprisingly moving as the author revealed what effect the secrets had on the family once in the open. The Silent Daughter is a very satisfying read, full of suspense, which kept me guessing throughout. Emma Christie has set the bar high with her debut and I can’t wait to see what she writes next.
My thanks to at ED Public Relations for sending me a copy of the book for review and inviting me to take part in the tour. The Silent Daughter is published by Welback on 3rd September in ebook and paperback formats. You can order your copy online here: The Silent Daughter
From the back of the book
Deceit runs in the family . . .
Chris Morrison is facing his worst nightmare.
His wife is in a coma.
His daughter is missing.
And the only thing more unsettling than these two events . . . is what might connect them.
Some secrets can change a family for ever.
About the author
Emma Christie was born and raised in Scotland but has spent much of her adult life living in Spain and Latin America. After studying literature and medieval history at Aberdeen University she spent five years as a news journalist with one of the UK’s top-selling regional daily newspapers, The Press and Journal, covering crime and political stories before reaching the position of chief reporter. She now works as a tour guide and lecturer in history, culture and politics with a US travel company, leading educational journeys across Spain, France, Portugal and Greece. She lives in Barcelona with her girlfriend, María Jose.