This was another book I convinced myself I loved before I even read it, after patiently waiting for almost two months on Netgalley to see if I’d be approved to read a copy, I was so anxious to read it. After reading it, I can tell you, The Marsh King’s Daughter is brilliant, simply brilliant!
‘I was born two years into my mother’s captivity. She was three weeks shy of seventeen. If I had known then what I do now, things would have been a lot different. I wouldn’t have adored my father.’
When notorious child abductor – known as the Marsh King – escapes from a maximum security prison, Helena immediately suspects that she and her two young daughters are in danger.
No one, not even her husband, knows the truth about Helena’s past: they don’t know that she was born into captivity, that she had no contact with the outside world before the age of twelve – or that her father raised her to be a killer.
And they don’t know that the Marsh King can survive and hunt in the wilderness better than anyone… except, perhaps his own daughter.
Packed with gripping suspense and powerful storytelling, The Marsh King’s Daughter is a one-more-page, read-in-one-sitting thriller that you’ll remember for ever.
“The Marsh King’s Daughter is a one-more-page, read-in-one-sitting thriller that you’ll remember for ever.” – that’s a bold statement, “you’ll remember for ever” – that’s setting the bar mighty high! But, wow, did this book exceed the bar, this book was so far above the bar, the bar is just a tiny speck to this book. This book is amazing!
Helena’s father escaped from prison at the beginning of the book, and I did wonder how Dionne was going to make Helena tracking her father last an entire novel. By incorporating Helena’s upbringing in the marshes, that’s how. Together, these past and present accounts are what made this one of the best suspense thrillers I’ve read!
I loved how strongly the emotion came through, Helena as a young girl adored her father and you could feel how happy she was at certain times growing up in the marshes; this really got to me because it just shows the innocence of a child, she had no idea what her father had done and for the first twelve years of her life, just how much he was keeping her from. I loved the parts of this book when Helena spoke about entering society – having no idea about social etiquette. And the descriptive detail of how to survive in the marshes – hunting, tracking – I loved it!
Helena as adult was still fighting an inner battle, while she knew her father was evil, she couldn’t deny that she had loved him as a child and watching Helena battle this notion with herself throughout the read really pulled me in to the novel. Equally, I loved how Helena was raised in isolation and when she set out to track her father, she knew isolation was what she needed again, just her and her father – one final time.
Basically, I loved this book from cover to cover – it was beautifully rich it detail, atmospheric and had a wonderfully dark psychological kick to it.
This is a crime fiction read that centres on kidnapping but it’s also so much more than that, it is so well written, certain parts, especially when Helena was describing her time in the marshes, reminded me of The Wolf Road by Beth Lewis – a literary thriller I also loved. So, if you liked that one, be sure to check this one out. As a matter of fact, regardless of reading preferences, The Marsh King’s Daughter needs to be on your reading list. It is, without a doubt, one of my favourite books of the year so far and I can’t recommend it enough.