For a first novel this isn’t half-bad. Beth’s world is one I was immediately interested in and, despite her albinism and nystagmus, a world in which she coped well – for a while. It is her inevitable breakdown that causes her husband, George, to alienate himself from her and their young son, Vincent. Growing up, Vincent tries his best to find out as much as he can about his mother, but his father holds everything close to his chest. To even think of her breaks his heart. However, there is more to this than meets the eye.
Blackmoor is a mining village: a close-knit community at the beck and call of the mine owners. When they are let down by the big bosses they turn to Michael Jenkins, a politician who may have an agenda of his own. The book moves from past to present effortlessly, telling Vincent’s story and that of his parents with a simplicity not found in many new books. However, sometimes this simplicity left me yearning for things to get a little more complex. This is a story where the characters are the key, occasionally in need of a little more plot, though. I can’t wait to see more from this promising author.