Friends since childhood, and married for almost a decade, Freya and Frankie have “been exploring the darker side of marital telepathy” (p 11).
Desperate for a baby, they have (p12):
reached that stage of material comfort where the only thing that mattered was the thing we could not have. And since we could not have it, we could not allude to it. And since we could not allude to it, it was all we talked about, but in ways we couldn’t anticipate until the words jumped out of our mouths.
An actor both on and off the stage, Lilias is a prime example of a narcissist, and the mutual withdrawal and longing between mother and daughter is beautifully portrayed, for example when they meet for lunch (p22):
She had not yet recommended a skin consultant or personal shopper or trainer in the Alexander technique, but when she did I would refuse to write down the name, and she would give me a lecture on sagging pores or slouching or dressing like a Jehovah’s Witness, or this shrinking violet thing. Lilias believed in recycling every word of praise that came her way. The youthfulness of her feet, remarked on by her pedicurist …
Eventually Freya must confront, not only her mother’s lies, but her own capacity for deception. The Daughter of Lady Macbeth is a heart-wrenching study of insecure attachment, marital tension and infertility. With beautiful descriptions of settings and relationships, my only quibble is that perhaps the author packed too much into the novel. Thanks to Sandstone press for my review copy.
Like both Freya and Kit, Steve, the protagonist of my second novel, Underneath, has grown up without a father, something I’ve written about for the post-publication part of my blog tour. But let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves as there’s still over a week of the prepublication phase to run. We kicked off on Sunday with Five questions with Cornflakegirl’s Musings (on my background in clinical psychology, the novel versus the short story, the solitary nature of writing, social media and a book recommendation), followed by a post on Fictionalising the Mentally Disordered Offender for imhblog. As soon as it’s Tuesday in Charli’s corner of the USA, I’ll be slipping into the Raw Literature slot fessing up to my compulsion to open my novels with the narrator walking downstairs. (Interpretations, however weird, welcome: if I’d realised I was getting into a pattern, I wouldn’t have done it!) Join me here on Friday for Annecdotal’s slot on the blog tour for a Legend Press title, as well as an update on my own.