Author: Catriona McPherson
Tittle: The Child Garden
Genre: Mystery/Suspense, Adult
Page count and format: 336 pages, Ebook
Expected publication: September 8th 2015 by Midnight Ink
Source: I received a eARC copy of this book by the publisher, Midnight Ink through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Eden was its name. “An alternative school for happy children.” But it closed in disgrace after a student’s suicide. Now it’s a care home, its grounds neglected and overgrown. Gloria Harkness is its only neighbor, staying close to her son who lives there in the home, lighting up her life and breaking her heart each day.
When a childhood friend turns up at her door, Gloria doesn’t hesitate before asking him in. He claims a girl from Eden is stalking him and has goaded him into meeting her at the site of the suicide. Only then, the dead begin to speak—it was murder, they say.
Gloria is in over her head before she can help it. Her loneliness, her loyalty, and her all-consuming love for her son lead her into the heart of a dark secret that threatens everything she lives for.
This book kind is apparently my first approval in Netgalley. You guys know how much I love the mystery/thriller/suspense genre. I was drawn to the blurb and the creepy cover which made me want to read this book. I wanted to love this book but it didn’t manage to capture my attention.
The story is about a woman named Gloria who lives nearby Eden, a care home where his son is admitted who suffers from PKNR which is pantothenate kinase-associated neurodegeneration, I had to look it up online to see what this was as Gloria never really tells us about it. One day while returning home a small incident occurs on the road and the the driver of the other car follows her. They recognise each other from school and she invites him in where he finally tells why he is here. Another of their classmate April Cowman has asked to meet her in the huttie to talk about a murder which happened during their time in school. Gloria decides to accompany him there but when they reach there they find April’s dead body and from there they discover various chain of incidents all relating back to the incident happened once long ago and she sets out to find the actual truth of what happened that night.
I believe the plot is definitely the main factor in the mystery/thriller/suspense genre. The plot in this book was good but not incredible enough to capture my attention overall. I felt a lot confused in various portions and had to reread them multiple times. It definition had potential but felt flat for me. But the last 10% was really incredible and the pace suddenly picked up and I was panting to know what happened next. If only this pace was maintained throughout the novel, it would have been awsome.
The mystery aspect was okay. Gloria is a good character but I had a hard time connecting with her. She sets out to find out the truth about the death that took place in Eden that led to the suspension of the teacher in charge and in closing of the school. She finds out that a lot of them are already dead, mostly by suicide which doesn’t actually seem right and she discovers they might be the next target. Unfortunately I didn’t get the chill while reading this, also some parts were boring that made me want to put this book down but I carried on. I was definitely surprised by the last 10% and when the mystery was uncovered I was like, omg freaking shit! I definitely didn’t expect that.
Overall, the plot was good and neatly executed but it failed to capture my attention. The characters and the mystery aspect were okay. The pace was really slow throughout the book which was a down factor for me but it did pick up its speed during the last 10% and surprised the hell out of me. The writing was a okay, a bit complicated and I had to reread a few portions. Other than that I did enjoy this novel.
If you love this genre and have patience for a slow storyline, then you could give this one a try.
So guys have you read this one? Or do you plan to read this?