The Girl in the Photograph
The Girl in the Photograph by Kate Riordan
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Alice has taken up with a married man and is now single and pregnant; her lover doesn’t know and Alice knows he won’t be interested. Her mother packs her off to Fiercombe Manor to stay with a friend of hers until the baby is born and it can be given away but Mrs Jelphs, the housekeeper, seems to have secrets and the house itself has a story to tell. Alice finds herself caught up in the story of the family who lived in the house before and, as Elizabeth’s life is revealed, Alice becomes terrified that her story will also end in tragedy.

This book is described as haunting and as one which will appeal to readers of “Rebecca” and in some ways I suppose that it is, but it also isn’t that sort of novel and I think those descriptions are a bit misleading as I came to the story expecting a lot more of it.

I recently read a novel of 228 pages. It is quite a small and thin book but it meant that every word meant something, and every incident was meaningful. I am afraid that I found “The Girl in the Photograph” entirely the opposite of that. Far from setting an eerie atmosphere, I found the descriptions long winded and the scene setting so tangled that I often stopped reading earlier than I would have done because I had had enough of it.

I must qualify by saying that I am not someone who enjoys novels with lots of description and not much action so, of course, this one was not really to my taste. Nevertheless, with such meaty subject matter, I feel that the author missed an opportunity here and I was quite disappointed with the read.

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