It's 1969, and the summer of love still lingers in London, but Gilda is haunted by her wartime past. She walked out on her son, Reuben, when he was just a boy and fears he'll never forgive her. When he marries a small, blonde gentile, she takes it as the ultimate rejection. Her cold, distant son seems transformed by love. What does his new wife have that she doesn't?
As Gilda's obsession builds, she starts to follow her daughter-in-law, copies her hairstyle and breaks into the newlyweds' home. Watching her son and his wife stumble through their first few months of marriage, she is forced to reflect on how she ended up so alone. And when new and shocking truths come to light, she has the opportunity to put the past to rest. She must decide between doing what is right and the tantalising prospect of revenge.
I listened to this over two days finding sneaky moments to hear the next part as I couldn’t wait to hear what was going to happen - willing Gilda to find some happiness.
Gilda, the main character, is awkward and at times her behaviour makes you cringe and yet as her story unfolds you come to understand her actions and insecurities. Set in prewar England to the swinging sixties the listener learns how history, expectations and dysfunctional families carry their long shadows over future generations.
A stunning debut novel., beautifully told . Enjoy.