Book Review: The Daughter by: Jane Shemilt

Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks

Publication Date: March 3, 2015

Origins:  From Publisher for Review

Synopsis: How well do you really know those you love?

Jenny loves her three teenage children and her husband, Ted, a celebrated neurosurgeon. She loves the way that, as a family, they always know each other's problems and don't keep secrets from each other. 

But when her youngest child, fifteen-year-old Naomi, doesn't come home after her school play and a nationwide search for her begins, secrets previously kept from Jenny are revealed. 

Naomi has vanished, leaving her family broken and her mother desperately searching for answers. But the traces Naomi's left behind reveal a very different girl to the one Jenny thought she'd raised. And the more she looks the more she learns that everyone she trusted has been keeping secrets.

How well does she really know her sons, her husband? How well did she know Naomi? If Jenny is going to find her, she'll have to first uncover the truth about the daughter she thought told her everything. 

Review: In THE DAUGHTER, a family is torn apart by the disappearance of their 15-year old daughter. It’s apparent to me this family doesn’t communicate very well and the parents, Ted and Jenny, are oblivious to what their 3 children, Ed, Theo, and Naomi, are up to on a daily basis. I don’t know if this obliviousness is deliberate or just due to having busy lives. I don’t think THE DAUGHTER should be taken as a morality lesson about women needing to stay home with their children, as there have been many parents I know who work and are able to be present in their children’s lives. Sure, it’s a given fact we never know the people in our lives (family, friends, co-workers, etc.) as intimately as we know ourselves. However, there just seems to be a distance in this family which is exacerbated when 15 year old Naomi disappears. I also don’t think it was fair for Jenny to be blamed for the distance when Ted was no better a father. THE DAUGHTER was slow-moving and there were points when I totally lost interest in the characters because I felt little to no connection. THE DAUGHTER also ends in a strange way, with no real conclusion or closure which may not appeal to some readers.

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  1. so many teens seem to have separate lives to one they project at home. We really do not know the innermost thoughts of those around us. Has to be an interesting book.

    1. I hope you give 'The Daughter' a try!


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