In Her Shadow by Louise Douglas
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
'Hannah Brown never thought she'd have a best friend like Ellen Brecht. Ellen is everything she isn't - beautiful, daring, glamorous and fierce. Growing up together in rural Cornwall, life seems perfect. But their idyllic childhood is shattered by obsession, betrayal and, ultimately, tragedy.
Hannah has tried for twenty years to forget what happened during that terrible summer. Then, one ordinary morning at work, she glimpses a woman who is identical to Ellen. Can it really be her? And has Ellen returned to forgive her - or to punish her?'
I have never read a book by Louise Douglas before and wow what a good one to start with! I have been so impressed with her book that now I have bought another one of her books!
Hannah Brown works in a museum in Bristol she has a relatively normal life. She has some secrets and had a mental breakdown a few years ago from something that has stemmed from her past. One day Hannah is having a normal day at work when she spots Ellen Brecht, the girl she tried so hard to forget from her past.
Ellen was Hannah's best friend. Ellen moved into Thornfield House, her grandmothers old house. Ellen and Hannah are completely different, Ellen can be intimidating and Hannah being the quieter of the two accepts her personality. Ellen has a struggle with her family life and Hannah sticks by her. However their lives become twisted with lies, betrayal and tragedy.
So was this Ellen that Hannah saw? What does she want? Hannah wants to get to the bottom of it and will not let it get to her as before.
This book takes your emotions on a range of journeys, it is captivating and from the moment I picked the book up to the moment I put it down I was hooked. It flowed wonderfully and was such an easy read.
The characters in the book are developed well and although this is told by Hannah's point of view, you can connect with all characters on some level.
The book is set into different chapters from Hannah's past and the present day, these link in nicely and I looked forward to reading about Hannah's past. I felt sad for Hannah at times in the book, the way Ellen treated her and her struggle with her own emotions in the book. I felt like I grew up with Hannah too, going from a teenager into an adult and coping with all she had to deal with. Towards the end of the book, I began to feel sad for Ellen and relised that life was not always as it seemed for her.
Louise Douglas knew how to build tension in this book and I couldn't wait to find out what was going to happen next. There were twists and turns through out the book and I did not find it predictable at all, which added to my enjoyment of the book. I found the book captivating and would urge others to read it.
I would like to thank the publisher for sending me such a fantastic book to review!