From her lookout in the crumbling mansion that was her childhood home, Ginny watches and waits for her younger sister to arrive. Vivien has not set foot in the house since she left nearly fifty years ago; the reclusive Ginny has rarely ventured out, retreating into the precise routines that define her days, carrying on her father’s solitary work studying moths.
As the sisters revisit their shared past, they realize that their recollections differ in essential and unsettling ways. Before long, the deeply buried resentments that have shaped both their lives rise to the surface, and Vivien’s presence threatens to disrupt Ginny’s carefully ordered world.
2 / 5 stars
I’m going to start with the things I liked about this book: the Gothic feel with the crumbling, isolated manor house, an older than normal narrator, a family history filled with secrets, the way it built up to what promised to be an exciting revelation at the end, the overall morbidity.
But there were two big issues that I had with it.
The ending was a huge letdown. I felt like it was building up to some big exciting revelations that changed the way I see everything Virginia had told me, but I was left with the fuzzy nothingness of ‘decide what you think happened’. I think this is a lazy way to end a book, it’s for authors that can’t decide what to do or how to make enough of an impact. I admit that sometimes (rarely) it works but how can you make any sort of decision when there just isn’t enough information given? It’s a guessing game that you never know if you’ve won.
My biggest issue is with what this book seems to say about people with autism. (view spoiler)The implications here seems to be that being autistic makes a person capable of murder and I don’t agree with that at all.
So much promise was let down by a poor ending and a questionable attitude towards autism.