Crikey – what an emotionally charged psychological thriller to kick 2020 off with. I couldn’t put The Home down, racing through it at rapid speed. Yes, this is a dark, sinister story but told with such empathy and depth, it really gripped at my heart.
The Home is the story of Annie, Hope and Lara – three young girls in care. Mainly told from their point of view, we are privy to their chaotic and traumatising childhoods involving violence, grooming, child prostitution and death.
Now they are apparently ‘safe’ from their destructive pasts, tucked away in care at The Home in a remote part of the Lake District. So why is one of them discovered murdered in a churchyard on Christmas morning? And why only in death is it revealed that the murdered young girl was around 20 weeks pregnant? Don’t worry, this is not a spoiler!
Told with such poignancy and depth, The Home is a heartbreaking, raw portrayal of the issues that lead children to be put into care. It also reveals how the care system is broken, underfunded with over worked, underpaid staff.
This has resulted in a visceral, hard hitting narrative, but there is also a simple, innocent beauty in the narrative too. That innocence and beauty comes directly from Hope, Annie and Lara. Yes, they are emotionally damaged and destructive, but the love and protectiveness they feel for each other is so moving and tangible.
I’m not sure if I was that shocked by the twist at the end, but I found it emotionally powerful. It’s so thought provoking and I can’t stop thinking about it.
The Home is a stark, brilliant read that needs to be read as it delves deep into many dark societal issues that we would rather ignore. Issues involving food banks, childhood neglect and pedophilia. Yet through Sarah Stovell sensitive, gripping writing style and realistic, vulnerable characters, we want to read on.
Hence I urge you all to read The Home when it is published on 22nd January 2020, especially if like me you’re a fan of emotional, page turning psychological thrillers. And if you have a Kindle, you can grab your copy now as it was released on Kindle in November 2019.
I swear, you won’t be able to put it down with it’s compelling narrative and succinct, emotionally charged chapters.
Thank you to Anne Cater from Random Things Tours for inviting me to be part of the blog tour to help publicise this great book, which I found a brilliant start to my reading year. To follow the reviews of my fellow book bloggers also on the blog tour of The Home, please see below.
The Home is published by Orenda Books on 22nd January and is available to pre order from Amazon now.