08 January 2018

The Betrayals

Women's Fiction
Contemporary Fiction
A 2018 Top Rated Read

By Fiona Neill

Paperback 416 pages
Publisher Penguin (10th Aug 2017)
ISBN-13 978-1405923453

'Thought-provoking and stands out from the crowd.' Grazia

📕My Review

Rosie and Lisa's families have always been the best of friends. That is until one final holiday at Rosie's childhood home on the Norfolk coast when Lisa has an affair with Nick - Rosie's husband. The repercussions blow the two families apart. Eight years later Rosie receives a letter from Lisa and once again, painful memories resurface.

The Betrayals is told through the perspectives of four people - Rosie, Nick, their son Max and daughter Daisy. What a wonderfully tangled web it is! Lisa's affair with Nick sets off a whirlpool of ripples that have far-reaching and lasting effects for both families.

Not having read a lot of contemporary fiction, I wasn't sure if this was going to be my 'thing' - but by golly, I loved it! By the end I really cared about these people and what was happening to them.

The book is centered around adult themes of friendship, love, adultery, divorce, health and loss. At times it was desperately sad and touching; yet nicely balanced with uplifting moments of happiness. It was beautifully written and delightfully enchanting. I enjoyed every moment.

I received an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

Barnsey's Books Rating 

📗The Blurb

None of them would forget that week on the wild Norfolk coast.

Best friends Rosie and Lisa's families had always been inseparable.

But that summer, Lisa had an affair with Rosie's husband Nick. And now, after years of silence, she sends Rosie a letter begging for help. A letter which exposes dark secrets.

Daughter Daisy's fragile hold on reality begins to unravel.

Teenage son Max blames himself for everything that happened that long hot summer.

And Nick must confront his own version of events.

There are four sides to this story. Who will you believe?

📘The Author

Fiona Neill was Born in Hackney, London. She grew up on a farm in an isolated village in North Norfolk, where she still spends as much time as possible. She graduated with a first class degree in Spanish and Latin American Studies at The University of Bristol in 1989 and went on to do an MA in politics at the Institute of Latin American Studies in London. Her third year at university was spent in Latin America where she lived and worked with Salvadorean refugees in Nicaragua and learnt to make jewellery in the Andean mountains of Peru. 

After university she went to live in Central America for a year and ended up staying for six. The first two years she worked for an international refugee organization in Latin America. She travelled in Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala and Nicaragua writing reports on refugees who had fled their homes because of civil war. Based on these trips, she began writing for The Baltimore Sun, The St Petersburg Times and The Atlanta Journal and Constitution. 

From 1993 she worked for three years as the correspondent for Reuters based in Guatemala before returning to the United Kingdom to join Marie Claire magazine as features editor. She then joined The Times Magazine as assistant editor for three years before returning to life as a freelance feature writer. 

Fiona Neill's first novel The Secret Life of a Slummy Mummy was based on her weekly column in The Times and published in 2007. It went on to become a Sunday Times bestseller and has sold worldwide in twenty-five countries, including the US, where an extract appeared in American Vogue.

It has been optioned in the UK by Zephyr Films. Her second novel Friends, Lovers and Other Indiscretions was published by Random House in May 2009. What the Nanny Saw has been optioned by Tiger Aspect. Fiona Neill lives in London with her husband and three children. She is currently working on a fourth novel and a first film script.

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