The Marsh King’s Daughter [review]

The Marsh King's Daughter

Title: The Marsh King’s Daughter
Author: Karen Dionne
Publisher: Sphere

[Synopsis]

When notorious child abductor – known as the Marsh King – escapes from a maximum security prison, Helena immediately suspects that she and her two young daughters are in danger.

No one, not even her husband, knows the truth about Helena’s past: they don’t know that she was born into captivity, that she had no contact with the outside world before the age of twelve – or that her father raised her to be a killer.

And they don’t know that the Marsh King can survive and hunt in the wilderness better than anyone… except, perhaps his own daughter.

Packed with gripping suspense and powerful storytelling, The Marsh King’s Daughter is a one-more-page, read-in-one-sitting thriller that you’ll remember for ever.

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[My Review]

The Marsh King’s Daughter is a novel I’m finding it quite hard to write a review about. On the one hand, it’s a well-written read which combines elements of thriller-style novels with more focus on character building. On the other, I felt it was a little slow at times and I lost interest a bit half way through.

I liked the storyline –both present day, which follows Helena as she discovers her father has escaped from prison and is seemingly trying to track her down, and the narrative set in the past, which I actually preferred. It’s interesting to reads about Helena and her mother’s life in captivity, and the way Helena herself never realised throughout her childhood that her mother and father are not the ‘normal’ parent set up – until one day when everything changes. I thought this was an interesting and unique sort of storyline.

I have to say, I found the present-day storyline a little dull. I know there’s a ‘chase’ at the centre of this narrative, so that should be exciting, but it felt quite slow. in both narratives there’s a lot of description about the land, the farm, the hunting that Helena and her father do, etc. I can see these are well-written but they just didn’t interest me, and I found myself getting impatient as I wanted to know more about how Helena and her mother finally escaped from her father’s captivity.

Perhaps I was expecting more of a thriller, but this definitely included more description and character development, which I usually enjoy but I felt it was a little drawn out. I am definitely in the minority with this opinion, so I’d say it’s definitely still worth giving a go, and regardless of anything else the writing itself is nicely done and the premise is very interesting.

Many thanks to Sphere for providing a copy of this novel on which I chose to write an honest and unbiased review.

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