Somewhere Inside of Happy by Anna McPartlin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Maisie Bean is a fighter. A survivor. Seventeen years ago, she went on a first date that went so badly it was enough to put the girl off chips. The marriage that followed was hell but it gave her two children: funny, caring Jeremy and bullish but brilliant Valerie. Just as it seems everything might finally start going right, sixteen-year-old Jeremy goes missing. The police descend and a media storm swirls, over five days of searching that hurtle towards an inevitable, terrible conclusion.
This is a heart-wrenching story, cleverly constructed and beautifully written. At times hilarious, at others tear jerking, the author never lets up with the emotion. Each character is drawn through flashbacks, conversations and confrontation. The only thing I would say is that for me there was too much information given as back story. I find this tends to feel too much like ‘info dumping’ and for me took away some of the tension that could have been built within the story. But I understand that this was more of a family saga than crime thriller. The message in the book is one of tolerance and understanding. Firstly, for two adolescent boys trying to find a way through the maelstrom of their hormones and emotions, and secondly the damage that domestic violence does, which goes far deeper than cuts and bruises.
I receive a copy of this novel via Netgalley.
Somewhere Inside of Happy is available from Amazon here.