I’ve seen so many reviews of this book I can’t even count! It seems like everybody has been reading ‘Little Darlings’, Melanie Golding’s debut novel. I had no idea this was gonna be such a hit when I requested it months ago, but now I’m very happy I did (and got approved), because now I feel like I’m part of the conversation! 😀
This book really has a unique touch added to its thrillery-horrory basics, and though because I had to stop reading it several times because life was happening, I enjoyed it very much and it sucked me in right away every time I got back to it.
I received this book from Crooked Lane Books via NetGalley in exchange for my honest and unbiased opinion.
I found this book on NetGalley, and it sounded intriguing, so I requested it. It’s a debut novel, so obviously I couldn’t have heard about the author before. What baffled me is that the blurb says there’s already a movie adaptation in planning! I don’t think I’ve ever heard about a debut novel making it to the screens, BEFORE even it’s published. Incredible.
I had to make days-long stops at reading the book because I’ve been having very busy days, and that took a bit away from the wholesome enjoyment of the story for me, yet it was so good and interesting that I still say it was way above average! I liked it very much.
The folk tale motives and elements match the psychological suspense feel of the novel way better than one would think. This book is weird, but weird in a good way. Most of the suspense and mystery is not only about what might have happened or is happening, but also that it’s not clear what is it about, you’re not even sure what subgenre you’re reading. That sounds confusing, and it is, but in this case this is the only way the story works. Is it psychological? Is it mythical? You have no way of knowing if Lauren, the main character only imagines things, or they really are happening. It obviously can work only if you have no idea if supernatural even exists in this book. And… you’re never sure about that. It’s done amazingly well.
I could rant about this story a lot more, but I’m not sure I can without giving away any spoilers. So, speaking of other things… The characters were real, relatable, people we can see in our everyday lives as well. Lauren, the mother, wasn’t very likable (at least for me), but she was very real and relatable. Her struggles after her babies were born were pictured way more realistically than it’s in most books. At the beginning, when it wasn’t yet a completely crazy ride where insanity and supernatural spiraled together in a hardly solvable knot, I thought many times that this should be read by anyone with a new mother in their close environment. Here I have to state, too, that I absolutely, whole-heartedly hated her husband, Patrick. He was in many ways a very good character – way too realistic, and that’s exactly why I was actually disgusted with him. The way he treated her, the way he acted… It was so infuriating that a couple of times I even had to stop reading a little and go out of the room. Unfortunately, there are too many men like him. Jo Harper, the detective was my favorite character in the book. She was human, she had deep feelings and she was badass! My kind of woman. There were even a bit of time for her in the story for a bit of a flirtation, without being forced or cringe-worthy. It was actually pretty cute.
The writing is beautiful. I was actually surprised how good it is, since this is a debut novel and all.
Let’s Give It a Grade!
- Story: 5/5
- Characters: 5/5
- Style: 5/5
- The Subjective Factor: 4/5
I could choose to write about many things here, the uncertainty of real and mythical, the use of old folklore… But I choose to say that the best thing about it was the beautiful and realistic demonstration of a new mother’s first few days, her thoughts, and the picturing of postpartum depression. (Which is way common than people think, by the way.)
All fans of mysteries/thrillers and psychological suspense. Though only if you’re okay with not being able to tell what’s real and what’s not.
If you have small children, I’d recommend to read it with them at a hugging distance around. Seriously. I’m pretty sure you’d want to hug them and never let go at some point. I don’t even had kids and had a shadow of that feeling while reading this.
Black tea with a hint of rum.
‘Alice’ by Avril Lavigne
A huge YES to more Melanie Golding!
Have you read ‘Little Darlings’? What did you think? Let’s discuss!!