To the outside world, Joycie Todd seems to have it all: a highly successful modelling career, a luxurious home, a man that would do anything for her… Looks can be deceiving however. When she was aged eleven, Joycie’s mother let the family home with a new man. Or did she? Joycie remembers the night her mum left; she also remembers the bloodstained rug under the bed which disappeared the next day. Twelve years later, after the death of a family friend, Joycie decides that it is finally time to find out the truth once and for all. What exactly did happen to her mother?
Although ‘Her Turn to Cry’ is billed as a psychological thriller, the setting of the story (the 1950s and 1960s) meant that it wasn’t as fast-paced as those set in the modern day. This is not a bad thing, though, as the author is able to build up a true image of the era and shows how life had changed in Britain for young people in the post-war years. The characters were likeable and you definitely find yourself willing Joycie to find out exactly what happened in the past whilst also hoping she finds happiness in the present.
One of the main strengths of this book is that the author manages to keep you in the dark until the very end as to the whereabouts of Joycie’s mother. Several other plot lines are successfully weaved into the story and, again, the author manages to blur how they are linked. The ending was not expected and was quite shocking. Without going into too much detail and potentially spoiling part of the plot, Chris Curran also deals with a issue that would have been extremely controversial in this era. This is handled in a very sensitive way and there is definitely empathy felt for the characters involved.
I found this to be a fairly quick read but one that is recommended.
With thanks to Net Galley and Killer Reads for my copy of the book.