Monday, 17 February 2014

Book Review (308): The Orphan Choir- Sophie Hannah

The Orphan Choir: A Novel

Publication: 28th January 2014
Publisher: Picador
Pages: 288
Genre: Mystery/Paranormal
Age Appropriate: 15+


Louise Beeston is being haunted.
Louise has no reason left to stay in the city. She can’t see her son, Joseph, who is away at boarding school, where he performs in a prestigious boys’ choir. Her troublesome neighbor has begun blasting choral music at all hours of the night—and to make matters worse, she’s the only one who can hear it.

Hoping to find some peace, Louise convinces her husband, Stuart, to buy them a country house in an idyllic, sun-dappled gated community called Swallowfield. But it seems that the haunting melodies of the choir have followed her there. Could it be that her city neighbor has trailed her to Swallowfield, just to play an elaborate, malicious prank? Is there really a ghostly chorus playing outside her door? And why won’t they stop? Growing desperate, she begins to worry about her mental health.

Against the pleas and growing disquiet of her husband, Louise starts to suspect that this sinister choir is not only real but a warning. But of what? And how can it be, when no one else can hear it?

In The Orphan Choir, Sophie Hannah brings us along on a darkly suspenseful investigation of obsession, loss, and the malevolent forces that threaten to break apart a loving family.
M Thoughts.
The Orphan Choir is the first book of Sophie Hannah's that I have ever read, so I don't really know whether this is her normal writing style or not, I'm unsure what I actually think of this story, sure it was a fast read, I finished this in less than a day but I'm not certain I liked the storyline, that may also have something to do with the main character Lou whom I disliked a lot.

I find that once I don't like the main character I find it hard to care what happens to said person, Lou I feel had no redeeming qualities that I could see, I felt like I was stuck in the head of someone that was on their way to/escaped from a mental institution, erratic in both her thinking and actions her thought processes were interesting to say the least, her attitude was all woe is me, it seems that any little thing that happened in her life was in her thinking a conspiracy against her, and after a while it got very tiring to continuously keep reading about.

Her feelings for her husband Stuart was almost childlike in the way that if he disagreed with her or upset her in any way, shape or form then immediately she was no longer in love with him or disliked him, until the time he did something that made her happy then she was going on about how great her husband was.

The ending I was a bit confused with, I never really understood why Lou suddenly started hearing or seeing the things that she did or for that matter the whole Pat Jervis part, I don't really understand either the point of Pat's part in the story, I didn't feel the book needed it at all.

If you're after a quick read with a bit of a paranormal twist thrown in then give this book a go.

I give this 3/5 stars.

Sophie Hannah is an internationally bestselling writer of psychological crime fiction, published in 27 countries. In 2013, her latest novel, The Carrier, won the Crime Thriller of the Year Award at the Specsavers National Book Awards.  Two of Sophie’s crime novels, The Point of Rescue and The Other Half Lives, have been adapted for television and appeared on ITV1 under the series title Case Sensitive in 2011 and 2012.
In 2004, Sophie won first prize in the Daphne Du Maurier Festival Short Story Competition for her suspense story The Octopus Nest, which is now published in her first collection of short stories, The Fantastic Book of Everybody’s Secrets. Sophie has also published five collections of poetry. Her fifth,Pessimism for Beginners, was shortlisted for the 2007 T S Eliot Award. Her poetry is studied at GCSE, A-level and degree level across the UK. From 1997 to 1999 she was Fellow Commoner in Creative Arts at Trinity College, Cambridge, and between 1999 and 2001 she was a fellow of Wolfson College, Oxford. She is forty-one and lives with her husband and children in Cambridge, where she is a Fellow Commoner at Lucy Cavendish College.  She is currently working on a new challenge for the little grey cells of Hercule Poirot, Agatha Christie’s famous detective.

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