Friday, 14 August 2015

Review: 'Elizabeth Is Missing' By Emma Healey

'Elizabeth Is Missing' follows Maud, a forgetful eighty-something year old, who holds the key to the seventy year old mystery of what happened to her big sister all those years ago. The only problem is, as Maud progressively descends into dementia the mystery of her sister becomes entangled with the mystery of her missing best friend, Elizabeth. As Maud sorts through her confused and misty memories the mysteries begin to piece together as she - and the readers - discover the truth.

PLOT: This was a very interesting concept and was like nothing I'd ever read before. It was so interesting to be inside the mind of someone so unreliable and confused because it confused me too and I found myself losing track of the story at points just like Maud. At times I did find myself getting a little bit bored but the aspects of mystery were enough to keep me hooked in and for me to continue reading.

CHARACTERS: Maud was a very difficult narrator to follow, her confusing brain and addled memories made for a very muddled narration and yet I never became irritated with her. Maud was so loveable and it was so difficult to experience her deterioration into dementia/alzheimer's as I began to feel so much pity for her and her family members. The surrounding characters were essential to the story and yet the author made them seem almost inconsequential so there is very little for me to comment on about them.

WRITING STYLE: The writing style was very good. I can't imagine how difficult it must be to capture the complexity of a mind descending into dementia/alzheimer's and yet Healey seems to do this effortlessly. Like previously mentioned, it was different from anything I have ever read and this is mainly due to the interesting writing style.

EMOTIONS: My heart bled for Maud and her family as she became more confused, it's such a relatable part of the story because so many of us will experience the same things whether ourselves or through family members. The scenes between Maud and her granddaughter Katie tugged at my heart strings as I could only imagine being in the young girl's place with my own grandparents. When the mystery was finally revealed I was gutted for Maud, I'd so badly wanted the outcome to be a happier one.

THE ENDING: The ending was a bit meh, but also it just added to the fact that for Maud there would be no ending to the mysteries, she would remain confused... so, in a way, it kind of fit.

Overall rating: 3/5 stars

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