Rating: 3 Stars
The Rumour by Lesley Kara is a domestic thriller that looks into the how rumours spread, and how they can lead to unexpected outcomes.
The story follows Joanna, an almost-single mother, who has moved to Flinstead-on-Sea, a small, sleepy town, from London in order to be close to her own mom. Jonanna’s son is having difficulties settling into the new school, and Joanna is clueless about how to help him. Then one day she hears a strange rumour that she cannot get out of her mind. She doesn’t do it intentionally, but a careless remark from her starts a chain of rumours that cannot be broken. Now everyone is talking about how a child killer might be living in their town under a different identity.
Ten-year-old Sally McGowan stabbed and killed four-year-old Robbie Harris almost 50 years ago. When she got out of the correctional facility, she was given a new identity and the press was banned from ever reporting about her. The Harris family, however, have never gotten over the tragic death of Robbie and feel that they were given the short end of the stick. No photos exist of Sally from the time she came out from rehabilitation, and no one seems to know where she is.
As rumours fly, Joanna becomes suspicious of everyone, especially when she starts to fear for the safety of her son. There might be some truth to the rumours, and someone is aware that Joanna is to blame for them. The child killer is suddenly closer and more dangerous than she realized.
The book is just about average as far as thrillers go. The story has some merit but it seems to meander here and there. I started to lose interest in the middle, and it was hard to come back to the story. Joanna comes across as neurotic and high strung without reason. The common habit of going off alone to shady places, like all Hollywood heroines, is also present in Joanna. Who goes off alone into all these places if they know that they are already being threatened?
There are too many suspicious characters in an attempt to make everything more entertaining, but it becomes a struggle to make sense out of all their stories. There are some too-good-to-be-true coincidences, like Liz not knowing who Michael was, and Joanna seeing Kay’s mail, which just seem a bit irritating.
Overall, an average book that is good for reading on the beach and not putting too much thought into it.