Orkney Twilight

Clare Carson. Head of Zeus (IPG, dist.), $14.95 trade paper (368p) ISBN 978-1-78408-096-9
Sam Coyle, the 18-year-old heroine of British author Carson’s uneven debut, is determined to uncover the hidden truth about Jim, her enigmatic, alcoholic, often bad-tempered father, ostensibly an undercover policeman. Sam accompanies Jim on a midsummer trip to Scotland’s Orkney Islands, where his enigmatic behavior—operating in shadows, trusting nobody—leaves her frustrated and suspicious. What draws him to the old watchtower? Why is he so interested in Norse mythology? The problem is that his behavior is more annoying than intriguing. And Sam reacts predictably: one hot day, after Jim goes off on one of his mysterious errands, she frets: “Anxiety gnawed at her stomach, the events of the previous day eating away, the shadow of the Watcher hanging over her… the ever present ticking of the clock audible through the doorways, marking off the seconds, minutes, hours.” Carson does a fine job piling up atmospheric details, and her descriptions of the land and sea are often lyrical, but readers will struggle to care about her flawed characters. Agent: Oli Munson, A.M. Heath Literary Agents (U.K.). (June)
Reviewed on: 04/24/2017
Release date: 06/01/2017
Genre: Fiction
Ebook - 458 pages - 978-1-78408-093-8
Hardcover - 368 pages - 978-1-78408-094-5
Paperback - 368 pages - 978-1-78408-095-2
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