Monday 24 March 2014

Review ~ Spilt Milk by Amanda Hodgkinson

Penguin Books
February 2014

From the beginning of this book I was completely taken into another world, to one of rural deprivation and where family secrets run as deep as the river which runs alongside the tumble down cottage which is home to the enigmatic Marsh sisters. In 1913, spinster sisters Nellie and Vivian Marsh eke out a bleak existence in the isolated Suffolk hamlet where dark secrets from their past are set to overshadow the whole of their lives. Fast forward to 1939 and London barmaid Birdie Farr’s story becomes inextricably linked with that of the Marsh sisters and as tendrils of the past start to intertwine, you know that life for Birdie will never be the same again.

The story unfolds almost like beautiful cinematography; sometimes in slow motion and at other times in fast freefall. Time and place are captured so perfectly that I could sense the languorous heat of the summer hay field and felt the fast flow of the river as it took the Marsh secrets away.

Beautifully written, this story really gets into the heart of soul of relationships; the love and rivalry between sisters is captured in tortuous detail and the heartbreaking  pain of unrequited love lingers in hidden corners.

Without doubt Spilt Milk is real joy to read and it is a story which will stay with me for a very long time.

Highly recommended.

My thanks to NetGalley and Penguin Books for my review copy of this book.



  1. What a great review - Totally agree. I read this writer's first novel and bought this one, curious to see what she might do next, and I am glad I did. Absolutely loved it.

    1. Thanks for your comment - so glad you enjoyed this book too :)

  2. Loved your review, very evocative - just like the cover!

    1. Thanks Wendy - both the story and the cover are great :)


Thanks for taking the time to comment - Jaffareadstoo appreciates your interest.