This feature is in association with NetGalley.
A Daughter’s Return by Josephine Cox with Gilly Middleton
Many thanks to both NetGalley and to HarperCollins UK for letting me see an advance reader’s copy of A Daughter’s Return.
I’m always a bit dubious about reading a ‘famous name’ novel that has been ghostwritten. I’m a bit old-school in that I prefer the name on the cover to be the name of the person who wrote it, and not a hook to seduce readers in with the famous name.
At least this one has the ghostwriter’s name on the cover too, even if it is much smaller than the famous name. However, I would much rather see Gilly Middleton as the main name on the cover.
It’s as though the publisher is trying to milk the famous name for all they can get, even when the famous name is, sadly, no longer with us. And had I not received an advance copy from the publisher in this case, I would not have chosen this book.
Putting that to one side, I did enjoy this story and I liked the seaside location. It was well-written with some nice characters, and some unpleasant characters. There was even a bit of a twist in the tale, which I also liked.
I got a bit mixed up with the dates and I’m not sure the multi-timelines worked, plus I got lost with so many characters having the same initial (such as Mildred, Mary, Mavis, Matthew, etc). There was also some head-hopping.
I thought that the ‘key’ to the ‘mystery’ was a bit contrived. As soon as this character was mentioned, I knew that they would have all of the answers, but where this character lived was the contrived part. I also thought that the second visit to the Lake District was wrapped up too quickly, as though the author was in a rush to squeeze it in.
But other than that, it’s a good read, and lovers of the stories in the style of Josephine Cox will probably enjoy it too. Not milking the famous name might have squeezed out an extra star from me.