Title: Precious Thing
Author: Colette McBeth
Colette McBeth was a BBC TV News Correspondent for ten years. She lives in London with her husband and three young children. She attended the Faber Academy Novel Writing Course in 2011. PRECIOUS THING is her first novel.
Publication date: 1st August 2013
Paberback: 352 pages
Why did I chose to read this book? I noticed their was a blog tour on Headlines’ brilliant website BookBridgr
Remember the person you sat next to on your first day at school? Still your best friend? Or disappeared from your life for good? Some friendships fizzle out. Rachel and Clara promised theirs would last for ever. They met when Rachel was the new girl in class and Clara was the friend everyone wanted. Now in their late twenties Rachel has everything while Clara’s life is spiraling further out of control. Then Clara vanishes. Imagine discovering something about your oldest friend that forces you to question everything you’ve shared together. The truth is always there. But only if you choose to see it.
This novel is full of plot twists and turns that will leave you feeling like you’re on a psychological roller coaster with the ending being a massive free fall into an unnerving abyss. Written in the first person in the style of a letter or perhaps a diary entry by our protagonist Rachel the chapters intertwine the past with the present to give a fast paced insight into the two friends shared history and relationship.
Rachel’s childhood is less than chocolate box happy. We witness her battling adolescence with an alcoholic mother and an absentee father unhappy and always slightly overweight and uncool. Her friendship with the vivacious and beautiful Cara is her lifeline and their friendship grows to an unhealthy co-dependence. Tell-tale signs are hinted at and feel just out of reach from the reader as Colette teases us with snapshots of half-told memories leaving our own imaginations to run rampant. This would usually annoy me but in this context it was brilliant and added to a feeling of unsettled eeriness.
The descent into family and past revelations gathers pace as Rachel takes it into her own hands to hunt down Cara and a stark and disturbing individual is revealed. However, a review should never reveal too much otherwise it’s ruined for everyone and the surprising nature of the story makes this difficult. Suffice to say the characters you encounter in Precious Moments are disturbing and portray beautifully a relationship that has at the heart psychological warfare and manipulation.
This is a great and shocking read about an intimate friendship and one which fans of a variety of reading genres will enjoy – read it!
Rating: 7 out of 10