Wednesday 31 March 2021

πŸ“– Book Review ~ Tall Bones by Anna Bailey

Random House
1 April 2021

My thanks to the publisher for my copy of this book

When seventeen-year-old Emma leaves her best friend Abi at a party in the woods, she believes, like most girls her age, that their lives are just beginning. Many things will happen that night, but Emma will never see her friend again.

Abi's disappearance cracks open the façade of the small town of Whistling Ridge, its intimate history of long-held grudges and resentment. Even within Abi's family, there are questions to be asked - of Noah, the older brother whom Abi betrayed, of Jude, the shining younger sibling who hides his battle scars, of Dolly, her mother and Samuel, her father - both in thrall to the fire and brimstone preacher who holds the entire town in his grasp. Then there is Rat, the outsider, whose presence in the town both unsettles and excites those around him.

Anything could happen in Whistling Ridge, this tinder box of small-town rage, and all it will take is just one spark - the truth of what really happened that night out at the Tall Bones...

πŸ“– My thoughts..

When seventeen year old Abigail Blake goes missing after a party in the woods the small US town of Whistling Creek becomes the focus of scrutiny as old grudges and long time resentments come to the forefront. This is a town with secrets not just between the townspeople and Abi’s friends but also between the dysfunctional members of Abi’s own family who all seem to carry simmering burdens of resentment and none more so than Abi's father, Samuel Blake, a Vietnam veteran, who is fighting his own demons.

Multiple points of view and a flipping forward and back in time make this a story you have to concentrate on. However, the author does a great job of keeping just the right amount of tension, which on occasion feels a little slow, but I think this is all a deliberate ploy to keep alive the placidity of life in Whistling Creek, and as the story continues it becomes impossible not to suspect absolutely everyone of being involved in Abi’s mysterious disappearance. Tall Bones moves with languid ease, there’s nothing rushed about Whistling Creek, no real sense of urgency in tracking down what happened to Abi but there is lots of gossip and sly innuendo which is in itself a dangerous motive for those who could be guilty of a crime. 

This psychological drama takes a close look at the oppressive nature of small town America where hidden in dark corners festering resentment and the dark prejudices of evil are allowed to flourish. Tall Bones is this author’s debut novel and it certainly gets her writing career off to an exciting start.

Twitter @annafbailey #Tall Bones



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