Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Seas of Snow by Kerensa Jennings
Release Date: 16th March 2017
Publisher: Unbound Digital
Genres:  Suspense / Psychological Thriller

1950s England. Five-year-old Gracie Scott lives with her Mam and next door to her best friend Billy. An only child, she has never known her Da. When her Uncle Joe moves in, his physical abuse of Gracie’s mother starts almost immediately. But when his attentions wander to Gracie, an even more sinister pattern of behaviour begins.

As Gracie grows older, she finds solace and liberation in books, poetry and her enduring friendship with Billy. Together they escape into the poetic fairy-tale worlds of their imaginations.

But will fairy tales be enough to save Gracie from Uncle Joe’s psychopathic behaviour – and how far will it go?


Seas of Snow is one of those books that leaves you emotionally exhausted. Written in a beautifully haunting way we are introduced to young Gracie who leads a fairly quiet and unassuming existence with her mother. Her days are spent in a world of Dragons and princesses as she and her best friend Billy, the boy from next door use their imaginations to play games of fairy stories where good always overcomes evil. They are innocent children with a fierce loyalty to one another. However, Gracie's life soon becomes the stuff of nightmares where it seems even Billy can't save her from her evil Uncle Joe.

Uncle Joe comes into Gracie and her mother's life like dark clouds rolling in prior to a storm. Unbelievably cruel to Gracie's mother and frightening to all who encounter him, Uncle Joe has an unhealthy interest in Gracie, staring at her with those dark raven eyes. Plotting and planning. Lusting.

We are given teasing glimpses into Gracie's childhood through the memories of an old and broken woman who is dying and the visits of Billy her old childhood friend. Billy who has remained loyal to Gracie and is still trying to be that young boy who fought Gracie's dragons for her a long time ago.

This book is at times extremely difficult to read because of the content of the story. Domestic violence and the insight offered into the psyche of a sexual predator are difficult to comprehend. Gracie's vulnerability to Joe and her mother's inability to protect her drag the reader kicking and screaming into a world of horror, fear and torment for poor Gracie. For Gracie's mother, she must remain loyal to Joe. He is family after all. A misplaced loyalty brought about by sheer terror of a man she knows is out of control and dangerous. The only escape Gracie finds is through the poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke where she can transport herself to a different time, a different place. 

This was a beautifully sad book that speaks of horrors too unimaginable but also of the love of two children and their life long friendship. It's a book about survival no matter how broken you are. I love the fact that literature and poetry provide Gracie with an alternative world in which to survive. For many people this is also their own reality. Written in such a way that the reader lives Gracie's journey with her in a way that we are given snapshots of what happened or what is about to happen in a slow but frighteningly teasing way that fills the reader with dread, apprehension and the story with tension just as poor Gracie must have felt waiting for whatever evil Joe had planned for her. This book will stay with me for a long time. A highly recommended read but be warned, some scenes are fairly disturbing.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Seas-Snow-Kerensa-Jennings-ebook/dp/B01FLFM7Z4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1497330985&sr=8-1&keywords=seas+of+snow https://www.amazon.com/Seas-Snow-Kerensa-Jennings-ebook/dp/B01FLFM7Z4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1497332551&sr=8-1&keywords=seas+of+snow 


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