The House We Grew Up In by Lisa Jewell
Publisher: Random House UK, Cornerstone
Publication Date: 18 July 2013
My Rating: 5/5
Meet the Bird Family
All four children have an idyllic childhood: a picture-book cottage in a country village, a warm, cosy kitchen filled with love and laughter, sun-drenched afternoons in a rambling garden.
But one Easter weekend a tragedy strikes the Bird family that is so devastating that, almost imperceptibly, it begins to tear them apart.
The years pass and the children become adults and begin to develop their own quite separate lives. Soon it's almost as though they've never been a family at all.
Almost. But not quite.
Because something has happened that will call them home, back to the house they grew up in - and to what really happened that Easter weekend all those years ago.
Lisa Jewell has written a wonderful novel here, a fascinating insight into a damaged family. The characters come alive on the page, faults and all. No perfect, goody-two-shoes characters here, and they are all the more likeable for this. The story switches between the past and the present, and we slowly begin to understand the full tragedy of what happened one Easter Sunday, and the rippling effect it had on the whole family.
At first I found the switching back and forth between the past and present a little confusing, but I quickly got into the flow of the book. It is one of those books that quietly gets its' claws into you and you find yourself drawn back to it at every free moment. The author has a wonderful writing style and although the story deals with tragedy and mental illness, there is a sense of warmth and comfort running through it.
A 5 star read! Highly recommended.
Thanks to the publisher for providing a review copy via NetGalley