Published by Boldwood Books on August 1 2019
Also by this author: The House Mate
No one is good enough for her son… As a single mother, Annie has an especially close relationship with her son, Ben. They have always been together. Just the two of them. So, when Ben brings home his mysterious beautiful new wife, Daisy, immediately Annie doesn’t trust her. Who is this woman who has taken her son away from her? And what is she hiding?
She’ll protect him with her life… When Ben disappears, suddenly Annie and Daisy are all the other one has. Alone in Annie’s big, remote house, just the two of them, the tension is rising. And like any protective mother, Annie will stop at nothing to expose her new daughter in law, and the secrets she is hiding…
I am so excited to share my review today with you of The Daughter-in-law by Nina Manning. Do check out the other bloggers today, Abby @ Anne Bonny Book Reviews and my fab friend Rachel @ Rachel Read It. I am even more excited as this is Boldwood Books first tour! Yay!
✮ My Review ✮
Gosh, where do you start with a book like this! Unreliable narrators and crazy-ass women complete check in this book! The Daughter-in-Law consists mainly of two characters, Annie and Daisy, the daughter-in-law. When I cracked this open, I didn’t have a clue where I was going to be taken. I felt the blurb was ambiguous and I read it a couple of times to try and tease out new information but got nothing. Instead, the book just enveloped me.
Ben and Daisy have a rather whirlwind relationship which leads to a “shotgun wedding”, Ben brings Daisy home one day to meet his mother as he’s been avoiding her for months and to say that Daisy got a frosty reception is an understatement. Annie takes smothering a child and mummy boys phrases to an entirely new playing field. Something didn’t sit right with me with her.
However, what I have always loved is an unreliable narrator stance, so when you view things from Annie’s chapter it makes you wonder if Daisy is everything that Annie says she is. Then when you read Daisy’s chapter it’s completely different. So what is the truth?!
I spent a lot of the time shaking my head at the book, and getting a bit irate from the behaviour of these women as the book focuses mainly on the two of them living in Annie’s house during the run-up to Daisy giving birth. Daisy at times was very submissive with Annie, she did as she was told, took her pills and played a quiet little mouse well. I got annoyed as I wanted her to question everything I had been. Granted I know when suffering from depression it’s very easy to hide away in that hole, I do, but I hated not knowing too! Annie is a complete control freak and also very damn right rude at times with her snipes. Not sure I would be able to hold my tongue, let alone smile and try to enjoy lunch. Her world starts and finishes with Ben.
Slowly, so very slowly we learn new information from throwaway comments and I lapped everything up trying to piece the puzzle together. I suspected one thread but I hit my head hard when Manning pulled the rug out from under with a reveal. Didn’t see it coming and that is something I loved!
The book is intense, although it doesn’t feel like much is happening. the chapters are short and snappy and I found myself at times holding my breath waiting for something to happen. I love a book grips you like this, creating a huge black cloud of foreboding, making you crave the next page, next chapter to find out what the frick is going on.
My head is buzzing from this book and where I was unsure of where I was going it knocked the wind out of me. Gah, you have to read it! I can’t explain any more of the plot it would just ruin it, but always go with your gut feelings! I know I did and it paid off!
Seriously I have to add, this is a blinking debut! How!! This book is so well crafted already, the writing flows and grabs your attention from the get-go. Manning knows how to pull you in and keep you glued to the pages of her book. She knows how much information to give you in each chapter, just enough to keep turning the pages. It has unnerved me, not many books can rattle me by the end and only a few have. This one has done something to my brain, it has got me a bit on edge, I can’t trust anyone now!!!!!!! Writing like this is why I love reading. With a story that packs in different subjects that truly hit home upon reflection and crafted the way Manning has done in her book tells you a lot! I am so excited to see what she does next.
Until next time xxx
Check out a snippet of the audiobook here!
Thank you to Megan at Boldwood Books for the tour invite and the author for a copy of the book in return for my honest and unbiased review.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: