Welcome! I’m a stop today on the blog tour for a new book titled Little Darlings by Melanie Golding. A few key facts about the book before I share my review and other information about the blog tour:
“Mother knows best” takes on a sinister new meaning in this unsettling thriller perfect for fans of Neil Gaiman and Grimms’ Fairy Tales.
Everyone says Lauren Tranter is exhausted, that she needs rest. And they’re right; with newborn twins, Morgan and Riley, she’s never been more tired in her life. But she knows what she saw: that night, in her hospital room, a woman tried to take her babies and replace them with her own…creatures. Yet when the police arrived, they saw no one. Everyone, from her doctor to her husband, thinks she’s imagining things.
A month passes. And one bright summer morning, the babies disappear from Lauren’s side in a park. But when they’re found, something is different about them. The infants look like Morgan and Riley―to everyone else. But to Lauren, something is off. As everyone around her celebrates their return, Lauren begins to scream, These are not my babies.
Determined to bring her true infant sons home, Lauren will risk the unthinkable. But if she’s wrong about what she saw…she’ll be making the biggest mistake of her life.
Compulsive, creepy, and inspired by some our darkest fairy tales, Little Darlings will have you checking―and rechecking―your own little ones. Just to be sure. Just to be safe.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Little Darlings by Melanie Golding is a story about pain, hope, psychosis, fairy tales, motherhood, lies, and drama. It is the type of book where you do not get all the answers and must interpret for yourself what actually happened in the final pages. For some, this will be a great opportunity to decide what is fantasy and what is real. For others, it’s a foray into an unknown world of uncertainty. Whether you lean in either direction, one thing’s for sure, it’s good writing.
Lauren Tranter just gave birth to twin boys. Her husband, Patrick, is committed and loving, but there’s something slightly off about him. There are no grandparents or siblings involved (okay, a minor scene with Patrick’s sibling later on, but it doesn’t impact the plot). Lauren doesn’t work outside the home. They seem to have little to no friends except a soon-to-be mother’s group who drops off peculiar gifts. When this happens, who do you turn to?
For Lauren, she’s happy in her cocoon until the birth is way more difficult than she expected. The doctors almost lose her to excessive blood loss at one point, but she bounces back and begins to care for the little tykes perfectly. Except during the first overnight in the hospital, a weird witch-like woman threatens to swap the babies because hers are bad and Lauren’s are good. Maybe they each keep one good and one bad, she suggests?
How would you handle the situation? Lock yourself in a bathroom to avoid anyone trying to steal them? Good plan, except on video tape, there’s no one attacking you. Was it real? Was it supernatural fantasy thing? The fairy tales tell a very different story… one about a woman who demands you drown your children in order to save them. Lauren is trapped. If she does nothing, the woman comes nightly to haunt her. If she does something, the cops and/or hospital threaten to commit her. What a paradox! To love, you must hurt. How would you handle the situation?
Golding tells a wicked story with heart. Readers will be uncertain where to lend their loyalties as a few twists and turns convince you Lauren is crazy, but then easily show you she’s not seeing things. For me, it drove me nuts! I like clarity, but I appreciate the variables at play here enough to indicate this book is a challenging read in a good a way. As a side story, one of the cops struggles to believe Lauren. Through research, she finds something that might confirm who kidnaps the kids, but in the end, all is not what it seems.
A psychological thriller, readers have a chance to determine how to interpret a story that can be told in many ways. Golding’s talent sits in the ability to walk a fine line of confusion and power. We will all feel differently, yet it’s the same words and story. Which part will you connect to? Definitely worth a read, you’ll find hidden gems in the life lessons and fairy tale history we learn along the path. I recommend it for those looking for something a little different than the normal family drama.
Many thanks to the author and Crooked Lane for the chance to read this book. I voluntarily participated on the blog tour and am excited to spread the word about this novel.
About the Author
Melanie Golding is a graduate of the MA in creative writing program at Bath Spa University, with distinction. She has been employed in many occupations including farm hand, factory worker, childminder and music teacher. Throughout all this, because and in spite of it, there was always the writing. In recent years she has won and been shortlisted in several local and national short story competitions. Little Darlings is her first novel, and has been optioned for screen by Free Range Films, the team behind the adaptation of My Cousin Rachel.
Who Else is on the Blog Tour?
The tour has ten (10) days of stops and you can see the blog names listed below. Stop by to check out everyone’s opinions or to enter the giveaway contest and win a free copy…
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My stand-alone novels, Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure, can be purchased on Amazon as electronic copies or physical copies. My new book series, Braxton Campus Mysteries, will fit those who love cozy mysteries and crime investigations. There are two books: Academic Curveball and Broken Heart Attack. I read, write, and blog A LOT on this site where you can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators. Follow my blog with Bloglovin.