She Chose Me by Tracey Emerson
I was sent a copy of the new novel, She Chose Me by Tracey Emerson, by the publishers Legend and have read the book. I now provide an honest review for this debut psycholgical thriller.
There are two main protagonists, Grace and Cassie. Grace has returned to the UK after working abroad for many years because her mother is terminally ill and is being cared for in a nursing home. Cassie was adopted shortly after her birth but as her adoptive mother has recently died, Cassie sets about finding her birth mother.
Grace receives a blank Mother’s Day card in the mail, she is upset by this because she isn’t a mother. Later, another Mother’s Day card arrives and after that she is subjected to a series of silent phone calls. These haunt Grace and she has disturbing flashbacks. She worries that someone is out to take revenge on her because they know what she has done. She finds herself having to face a past she has tried hard to ignore and has run from for years.
Cassie has been brought up by wealthy, adoptive parents but she feels there is something missing in her life: her birth mother. Cassie identifies her birth mother and sets out to get to know her before revealing her identity.
While the ending is quite satisfying, if a bit predictable, I found the method of narrating She Chose Me through the two women quite confusing and it took me a long time to establish Cassie’s identity in my own mind. That irritated me. As a debut novel, it was interesting in parts but not as engaging as I had hoped.
Before writing fiction, Tracey worked in theatre and community arts. As well as acting she ran drama workshops in healthcare settings, focusing on adults with mental health issues. She has a PhD in Creative Writing from The University of Edinburgh and works as a literary consultant and writing tutor. She is also the Creative Director of The Bridge Awards, a philanthropic organisation that provides micro-funding for the arts.
Her short stories have been widely published in anthologies and literary magazines, and her debut psychological thriller, She Chose Me, is published by Legend Press.
You can find out more about Tracey and her writing at: http://www.traceyemerson.com