Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Life, Death and Vanilla Slices - Jenny Eclair

Product DetailsJean Collins had two daughters. But she only loved one of them. She knew it was wrong, but she just couldn't help herself. Jess was a little sweetheart - everyone said so. Anne was awkward and serious and not much fun, to be frank.

But now the years have passed. Jess is missing - run off long ago, no one knows where or why. So when Jean is left in a coma after a road accident, it's Anne who travels back up north to sit with her mother. And she wonders - why did Jean dash out into the road without looking? And why was she carrying a box of Vanilla Slices, the cream cakes she only ever bought for extra special occasions?

Meanwhile there are secrets waiting for Anne and  Jean, back at the old family home. Secrets that were buried along time ago....

Published by: Sphere - Fiction
Year: 2013 - Paperback
Pages: 343
ISBN: 978-0-7515-4755-9

So here we are with number seven off the book shelf.  I hadn't realised that this Jenny Eclair is the same Jenny Eclair Comedienne, sometimes it can take a while for the penny to drop. This I believe is Ms. Eclair's third novel.  

As stated above Jean Collins has two daughters but when she has a serious accident it is only her daughter Anne who comes to be by her side.  Daughter Jessica has not been seen or heard of in years.  When growing up Anne was always the academic bookworm where as Jessica was the girlie girl much more sedate than her older sister and was always the center of attention.  Jean had never been able to hide the fact that her younger daughter was her favourite and poor Anne was always left trying to please her mother and Jim, Jeans husband was always having to remind his wife they had two daughters both of which were unique.   Whenever there was an extra special occasion to celebrate Jean would buy Vanilla Slices and it was this that got Anne to wondering. What was the special occasion that had made her mother A. go out and buy Vanilla Slices and B. walk straight out in front of an oncoming vehicle.  

The book is very well written as you would imagine it would be. Each chapter is about Anne or Jean.  Jeans chapters are written whilst she is in a coma. She cannot understand why she cannot wake up or in fact move, but her mind however is firmly switched on and whilst she is waiting for her body to behave she reflects on her life and those of her daughter's childhoods. Anne of course is now a grown women with family of her own and her chapters are about the here and now with some reflection to days gone by.

Of course as there is with all good family tales there are hidden secrets that will be revealed within these pages one of which may provide the answer as to why Jean was buying those Vanilla Slices. 


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