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After reading some of Rosie Goodwin's books before (with varying degree's of success), my Mum in law lent me a book that she said would be enjoyable, with the only instructions I gave her being "no more of the kiddie abuse books, they are miserable...." (which I have to say is contained in may of this author's books due to her previous job of working in the care system), though how she got from child abuse to imaginary horses is beyond me......
Maisie has just celebrated her first wedding anniversary.... Well first one with this husband anyway! Married three times, nearly murdered by the first one, losing the second one far too soon (as he was the love of her life), she now finds that she is married to Tommy, someone that she initially thought she was in love with, but is now undecided.
Maisie is visited by Hamilton on the eve of her anniversary, who is Hamilton.....well, he is her imaginary friend from her childhood, who just happens to be a horse, and only ever seems to appear when her life is going down hill!
Hamilton is starting to question her new husband Tommy, but why? Ok, so he has started becoming a little distant, but that's life surely, but after a few different random attacks of burglary and vandalism maybe he has got a point!
After the attacks Tommy suggests they move, putting their troubles into the past and starting afresh, but is he leaving his life behind, or is he taking it with him?
Ok, so you may have gathered this is a slightly unusual book! The main character of Maisie is quite damaged, this starting in her childhood (which is when Hamilton first appears to her), with her making the most of it by writing of her experiences with her imaginary friends (there are other horses now, Hamilton has a mate called Bergonia, who appeared when Maisie got married the second time), and becoming a world renowned author, not bad she thinks for a plain Jane with a wizened arm!
As the book progresses I did feel very little in sympathy for Maisie, with the things that happen to her almost going unquestioned, and her never asking too many questions either, I just felt that she is a character I couldn't relate to, so felt little interaction with the story, and by the end I wasn't really bothered what happened to her!
There are so many theme's going on at the same time, there is the ghosts of Maisies past re-occurring, with her first husband trying to burn her alive in a house round the corner from her new house, which to me would mean she wouldn't move back there!?
Then there are all the bombings instigated and executed by the IRA, which seems to hold no relevance to the story in hand, though when the connections do become apparent (and not in the way you would assume either), it felt a little strained trying to knit them all together.
The story was readable, and from what I can gather is either a story that Catherine Cookson started, with Rosie Goodwin finishing, or a theme done in the same manner, either way this was not up to par for me at all, and can only give it three stars.
Price wise this is available for around the £5.00 mark via www.amazon.co.uk
Thanks for reading x