Sunday, August 20, 2017

Review: The Dollhouse

Fiona Davis' story "The Dollhouse" is told in two parts by two women who live in the Barbizon Hotel (or Dollhouse as it was formerly known). 

What we have is a clever mystery that gradually unfolds in two time-lines: the modern day with journalist Rose Lewin, and the past, the 1950s, with Darby McLaughlin.  The lives of both women intersect in the modern-day timeline due to a chance meeting - Rose's interest is immediately piqued and she decides to discover the secret past of Darby, one that Darby and others are keen to keep hidden.  

As the story, told in alternating chapters, develops, Rose's "real life" begins to imitate that of the past life of Darby.  The more we read, the more we have this strange sense of history repeating itself - deja vu.  We the reader are never quite certain how things will pan out in the end - for either Rose or Darby, until the story coalesces in the final few chapters.

This is a powerful first novel wherein author Fiona Davis weaves a tantalising tale of love, betrayal, and mystery that keeps the reader enthralled to the very end.

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