09 June 2010

Review: A Dark Dividing by Sarah Rayne

A Dark Dividing by Sarah Rayne book coverAnother of my favourite authors, Sarah Rayne has a unique style of writing that is evident in every book I've read so far (four in total). I'm drawn to the way in which she always includes an old, menacing, scary building to feature in the centre of each of her novels. The building is always creepy and contains a lot of history, pain and secrets from the past. Terrific concept that always draws me in.

Secondly, her writing style always flicks between the past and the present, and often 3 different periods, as in this book A Dark Dividing. There's always a number of shocking secrets revealed throughout the plot and each book builds to a climax revealing how all of the characters are connected in some way.

I love this formula, however it does make her books instantly familiar on the one hand and a little predictable on the other. I'd love to see her take a risk and write in a different style, but perhaps I'm yet to find and read these books, given she's written 20 in her writing career so far.

Anyway, Dark Dividing followed the format mentioned above and this time was about conjoined twins. The creepy building was Mortmain House, which was suitably scary. Historically it was used as a workhouse for men and women to live who were so poor they would otherwise die of starvation. The work was incredibly gruelling and the conditions horrendous. Children abandoned at birth or born to families to poor to care for them ended up here and suffered terrible treatment.

I don't want to spoil the story about the conjoined twins born 100 years apart and how they're connected, however I thoroughly enjoyed the story line and was gripped by the some of the characters.

I must admit that in previous book reviews, I think I claimed Sarah Rayne was an Australian author, however after recently visiting her website, I found out I've been wrong all this time!! She's from the UK!

In summary, this is another great psychological thriller from a great author.

My rating = ***1/2

Carpe Librum!

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