Hello, Book Dragons! Today I would like to welcome you all to my stop of the Blog Tour for Keep Her Sweet By Helen FitzGerald and I would like to share a review, with all of you. Thank you very much to Anne from Random Things Tours for the invitation. Please show some love to all the wonderful book bloggers on this blog tour by following and sharing their work. 🙂
Publisher: Orenda Books
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Release date: 26 05 2022
Price*: Kindle £4.27 (GBP)/ Paperback £7.91 (GBP)
Pages: ~ 270
You can get this book here:
Description of the book: Desperate to enjoy their empty nest, Penny and Andeep downsize to the countryside, to forage, upcycle and fall in love again, only to be joined by their two twenty-something daughters, Asha and Camille.
Living on top of each other in a tiny house, with no way to make money, tensions simmer, and as Penny and Andeep focus increasingly on themselves, the girls become isolated, argumentative and violent.
When Asha injures Camille, a family therapist is called in, but she shrugs off the escalating violence between the sisters as a classic case of sibling rivalry … and the stress of the family move.
But this is not sibling rivalry. The sisters are in far too deep for that.
This is a murder, just waiting to happen…
Chilling, vicious and darkly funny, Keep Her Sweet is not just a tense, sinister psychological thriller, but a startling look at sister relationships and they bonds they share … or shatter.
Extract from the book:
She’d never admitted it to Andeep, but when she saw him at The Comedy Lounge for the second time, she was devastated, and a little ashamed, that he was repeating the same routine. One-quarter of a joke in and she thought he was having a panic attack, why else was he being unspontaneously unfunny? As she’d only been to two live comedy shows previously, she didn’t realise that, really, they were all just reading the same thing over and over. In her close-knit extended Irish family, repeating jokes was up there with being English. Andeep still told the same set of twelve jokes to this day, and it was difficult when people didn’t understand why Penny did not laugh.
The joke wasn’t over and she was late and vomitous. The children would be present at this counselling session – for the first time ever – and may say anything. Children – they were enormous adults, suddenly and indefinitely expecting her to make thousands and thousands of meals again.
If only they were still children – she would have been able to prep them for family therapy first. She would have been able to ask, bribe, no tell, them not to mention the time she ran away to the garage, for instance, when Twin-Pearls Janey had to break the window to wake her because Little Asha was playing teachers with Camille and punishing her with a fly swat. Andeep was at the Adelaide Fringe again at the time, an annual career essential that cost them four times what he ever made. Penny loved that garage. Apparently she had been asleep in it for five hours when Twin-Pearls clambered through the broken window and landed on her.
Brendan Valencia’s laugh seemed genuine, Penny confirmed to Andeep, twice. Cheered, he eased the hand brake the rest of the way home.
Thankfully, the girls were so angry at each other that they didn’t mention the garage incident, nor the time Penny smacked Camille for stealing her sister’s favourite waistcoat then staining it with raspberry sauce then using green fairy liquid to completely destroy it almost as if on purpose. Penny wasn’t in trouble in family therapy at all, particularly after Camille said the F-word. Mrs Salisbury recoiled and coughed, and paused for an uncomfortable amount of time. She was very old fashioned – Mrs Salisbury. She then went on about the importance of siblings, that they are your only shared historians, the longest relationships you will ever have and should therefore be nurtured forever like her relation ship with her beloved little sister, Rosie, even though she’s so far away…
Penny zoned out. She needed to call her big brother, James, it had been way too long. She imagined him and little Frankie wrestling on the gold lounge carpet in Coburg, everyone laughing and taking bets, but never on Frankie. Frankie was the youngest of the three boys (Penny’s mum stopped when she finally had a girl), and he always needled and whined and picked fights – just like Camille – even though he knew he would end up pinned down. It was like he always wanted to play the victim. Penny smiled as she recalled the rules of engagement for wrestling and other games in her childhood home. James wrote them on the wall of the treehouse one summer. She was so excited finally to be included in their big-boy adventures.
The rules were thus:
No nipples. (Penny’s idea.)
Not on your birthday. (Frankie’s idea.) It was Frankie’s twelfth birthday that day.
And James agreed … that this would be the rule ‘from tomorrow onwards’. Poor Frankie.
About the author: Helen FitzGerald is the bestselling author of ten adult and young adult thrillers, including The Donor (2011) and The Cry (2013), which was longlisted for the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year, and adapted for a major BBC drama. Her 2019 dark-comedy thriller Worst Case Scenario was a Book of the Year in the Literary Review, Herald Scotland, Guardian and Daily Telegraph, shortlisted for the Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year, and won the CrimeFest Last Laugh Award. Her latest title Ash Mountain was published in 2020. Helen worked as a criminal justice social worker for over fifteen years. She grew up in Victoria, Australia, and now lives in Glasgow with her husband.
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