Absolutely thrilled to be taking part in Sophie Hannah’s Haven’t They Grown blog tour! 🙌🏻 My thanks to Jenny Platt for the invite and Hodder & Stoughton publishers for the ARC. First a little bit about the author and this book before I share my thoughts…
About the Author
Sophie Hannah is an internationally bestselling crime fiction writer whose books have sold millions of copies worldwide. Her crime novels have been translated into 49 languages and published in 51 countries. Her psychological thriller The Carrier won the Crime Thriller of the Year Award at the 2013 UK National Book Awards. In 2014 and 2016, Sophie published The Monogram Murders and Closed Casket, the first new Hercule Poirot mysteries since Agatha Christie’s death, both of which were national and international bestsellers. She went on to publish a third, The Mystery of Three Quarters in 2018 which was an instant bestseller, and her fourth Poirot novel, The Killings at Kingfisher Hill will be published in August 2020. Sophie helped to create a Master’s Degree in Crime and Thriller Writing at the University of Cambridge, for which she is the main teacher and Course Director. She is also the founder of the Dream Author Coaching Programme for writers which launched in September 2019.
Sophie is also an award-winning, bestselling poet, and her poetry is studied at GCSE level across the UK. She has co-written two murder mystery musicals with composer Annette Armitage: The Mystery of Mr. E and Work Experience. She has written a self-help book called How To Hold a Grudge: From Resentment to Contentment – The Power of Grudges to Transform Your Life, and hosts the How to Hold a Grudge podcast.
Sophie lives with her husband, children and dog in Cambridge, where she is an Honorary Fellow of Lucy Cavendish College.
All Beth has to do is drive her son to his Under-14s away match, watch him play, and bring him home.
Just because she knows that her former best friend lives near the football ground, that doesn’t mean she has to drive past her house and try to catch a glimpse of her. Why would Beth do that, and risk dredging up painful memories? She hasn’t seen Flora Braid for twelve years.
But she can’t resist. She parks outside Flora’s house and watches from across the road as Flora and her children, Thomas and Emily, step out of the car. Except…
There’s something terribly wrong.
Flora looks the same, only older – just as Beth would have expected. It’s the children that are the problem. Twelve years ago, Thomas and Emily Braid were five and three years old. Today, they look precisely as they did then. They are still five and three. They are Thomas and Emily without a doubt – Beth hears Flora call them by their names – but they haven’t changed at all.
They are no taller, no older.
Why haven’t they grown?
The story opens in the village of Hemingford Abbots, but we find ourselves in various places – including the US in this absolutely gripping novel! The reader is faced with past arguments, relationships, maipulation, coincidences, friendships, control, deception, coercion, gaslighting, secrets, lies and a desperate search for the truth.
OH MY DAYS – What a read!! I was absolutely intrigued and totally hooked by the opening of this novel – I just needed to know more! Superb characterisation, an intriguing and compelling plot – this novel was sinister, intense and oh-so-twisty! I loved it!
Although the premise had me turning the pages to find out the answers, it was definitely the characters who drew me in and made me want to know every-single-thing about them. Unreliable at times, some relatable and some that made me cringe – my head was spinning in the best possible way. I have read previous books by this author, but for me, there was something special about this one and I can’t put my finger on why – but even weeks after reading this book, it still gives me goosebumps! Brilliant!
Would I recommend this read? You bet your backside I would. I’m not sure I’ve ever read a novel like this before – I found it to be original, intrusive in my thoughts, and quite questionable in the best possible way – all the What’s? Who’s? and OMG did that just happen’s? were screaming in my head and I love it when a book does that. Highly recommended!