In her gripping debut novel, Lucy Atkins takes us on one woman's journey to the beautiful and rugged Pacific Northwest to discover the dark secrets of her family's past so that she can understand and accept herself. Kal McKenzie was never close to her mother Elena, whose coldness towards her spoiled any chance of a good relationship. When Elena dies of cancer, Kal feels forlorn: how do you mourn a mother who, inexplicably, just didn't seem to love you? While clearing out Elena's art studio, Kal finds a drawer packed with postcards, each bearing an identical one-line message from a Canadian gallery owner named Susannah Gillespie: "Thinking of you." Who is this woman and might she hold the key to her ruined relationship with her mother? Conflicted by her grief and shaken up from recently seeing a covetous text from an old girlfriend on her husband's cell phone, Kal impulsively sets off with her toddler Finn to Susannah's home on a remote British Columbian island, a place of killer whales and storms. Soon Kal quickly realizes she has made a big mistake. The striking and enigmatic Susannah will only share a few scraps of information about Elena. Kal discovers that her mother was a pioneering orca researcher-an activist trying to save the powerful and dangerous creatures.
About the Author
Lucy Atkins is an award-winning feature journalist, book critic, and author. She writes for many newspapers and magazines in the UK including The Guardian, The Sunday Times, Red, Woman, Home, and Grazia. She is the author of a number of health books and is a media commentator on parenting and cultural issues. She is a consultant on advertising campaigns and produces written materials for documentary films. She has been a lead fiction reviewer for The Sunday Times for 15 years, and chairs events at the Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival. Lucy has a degree in English from Oxford University (1990), was a Fulbright Scholar for an M.A. at the University of Pennsylvania. She lives in Oxford with her husband and three children and their pets. This is her debut novel.
"A gripping page-turner." —The Sunday Times
"This novel is brilliantly gripping."—Closer
"A moving and suspenseful tale of the secrets a family keeps." —Rachel Hore, author of The Silent Tide
"A page-turning and suspenseful tale . . . I read it in three sittings . . . a compelling emotional mystery." —Lucy Clarke, author of The Sea Sisters
"Beautifully written and compelling . . . a wonderful thriller that is also such a strong portrayal of motherhood. —Sabine Durrant, author of Under Your Skin