“New name. New Family. Shiny. New. Me”
Annie’s mother is a serial killer and the only way Annie could make her stop is to hand her into the police.
Psychologist Mike Newmont takes Annie in until her mother’s trial begins and gives her a new name – Milly. Only Mike, his wife Saskia and daughter Phoebe know who Milly is as Mike oversee’s Milly’s therapy and preparation for the trial.
Milly picks up on the strained relationship between Saskia and Phoebe as Phoebe treats Milly cruelly, a typical teenager who has to put up with the revolving door of foster kid’s staying at her house and as Milly navigates the start of a new school she encounters the inevitable bullying form the popular girls of which Phoebe is Queen Bee.
We start to hear Mother’s thoughts coming through into Milly’s narration encouraging her to give in and we see glimpses of what life was like for Annie with her mother. Milly befriends troubled younger girl Morgan and starts to have a closer relationship with one of her teachers which complicates and starts to highlight Milly’s darker thoughts.
As the trial gets closer her Mother’s presence in Milly’s mind becomes more prominent as she pushes her to give in to her darker urges.
“Good me. Bad Me. She is after all, her mother’s daughter…”
I was really looking forward to this one but found I just wanted more! Though a different take on a thriller it just didn’t quite deliver for me. I found the ‘plot twists’ were predictable, especially the bullying in the new school and from Phoebe at home.
I found Annie/Milly was an unreliable narrator and as such felt no sympathy for her. Was I meant to?
Unfortunately not that “extraordinary, controversial or explosive”– no scares or surprises and was very vague when talking about what Annie went through at the hands of her mother. As a ‘dark’ novel I wanted a bit more explanation.
The ending isn’t as predictable, but I think most readers will see it coming.
I’d love to hear what you thought! If you like this then try Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn