A family come together at their family hotel based in Switzerland. The matriarch, Magdalena has summoned them all for a celebration but it is clear from the outset that there are tensions between her four children.
This novel is quite simply about family life and how actions from the past have consequences years into the future. This was an engaging book with a number of incidents that force Magdalena and her children to reflect on their individual actions which have caused relationships to change within the family. Of course as the mother, Magdalena blames herself, but it is clear to the reader that her adult children have plenty to feel guilty about themselves.
I enjoyed the book, although at times I did feel it over-emphasised the point that the author was trying to make. Less is sometimes more, and as a reader I do prefer to put the evidence together myself than being implicitly told that some of the children didn’t fare well being away at boarding school. However, I did like the fact that the offspring had differing memories of their time away. Often when reading about families it is assumed that siblings are at war and have opposing views on everything or so similar that there is little to differentiate them. Jane Riddell avoids this lending plenty of shades of grey to the characters in this novel.
A different, more reflective book, than I often read, this book tackles some difficult issues, particularly those involving the teenage Lucy daughter of high-flying lawyer Portia for whom this break has the biggest impact.
I would read more by this author and would like to thank her for supplying me with a copy in return for this honest review.
Water’s Edge is my sixth book read for the COYER challenge
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