Review Blog

Mar 24 2016

Book of lies by Teri Terry

cover image

Orchard, 2016. ISBN 9781408334287
(Age: 15+) Witchcraft. Truth and Lies. Supernatural/Horror. Although the reviewers quoted on the endpapers about Terry's writing, provide hints that this might be a dystopian narrative, it is probably more a dark journey into the world of the supernatural. If this was made into a film it would be scary! Terry writes in such a way that the gentle journey into fear happens slowly, and the ordinary although sad beginning slowly twists the reader into the tangled web of lies. Just as a web-captured insect does not envisage the ultimate end, the reader too is drawn into an ultimately difficult conclusion.
The well-written and compelling story begins with the death of a mother in horrific circumstances, and the discovery by her estranged daughters Quinn and Piper, that they are identical twins, separated deliberately to save them from the family secret that haunts them. The reason for their separation is the essence of the story, and what draws them together. But it is also what makes this a chilling and unsettling journey into a family that has been separated by lies and by the sinister magic of their ancestors. The core of identity for the twins, and their ability to deceive others around them adds to the tension of the tale, told through the individual voices of the girls. A shared love interest adds a layer of complication as does the setting for part of the narrative in the foreboding wild of the Dartmoor moors. But ultimately this is a story where evil and lies invade a family to create a sense of dread.
Recommendation only for those aged 15+ who can cope with the torment and tension of the supernatural horror story. Well-written and difficult to put down (even for someone who does not like this genre!)
Carolyn Hull

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