Tuesday, 6 August 2019

Sanctuary blog tour – review

Sanctuary. It's the perfect town. . . to hide a secret.

To Detective Maggie Knight, the death of Sanctuary's star quarterback seems to be a tragic accident. Only, everyone knows his ex-girlfriend is the daughter of a witch - and she was there when he died.

Then the rumours start

Bereaved mother Abigail will stop at nothing until she has justice for her dead son. Her best friend Sarah will do everything in her power to protect her accused daughter. And both women share a secret that could shatter their lives.

It falls to Maggie to prevent her investigation - and Sanctuary itself - from spiralling out of control.

A gripping thriller for fans of Big Little Lies, A Discovery of Witches and The Familars.

Content warning: rape and child abuse

I'm a huge fan of VV James' YA books (as Vic James) and I loved this book just as much. It's dark, extremely tense and twisty, and is definitely an adult book.

The alternating viewpoints worked incredibly well as a device to reveal the mystery in small pieces. Each voice and character was distinct and well-developed, which is incredibly difficult to pull off. The detective, Maggie, was my favourite character but I enjoyed the exploration of even the less likeable characters.

Another great part of this book is how seamlessly magic fit into the history and laws of the world. It drew on the history of witchcraft to incorporate a new and believable timeline. The fantastical elements also complement the very real concerns of consent and the treatment of victims. Sanctuary deals with the matters listed in the content warning in an unflinching but empathetic manner.

The mystery aspects and plotting in this book are fantastic. Elements that are going to become relevant are peppered through the narrative but I found it a real challenge to fit everything together.

This is a gripping, tightly plotted book that tackles important issues. I'll read anything VV James writes and I'm excited by her move into adult fiction.

Thank you to Gollancz for the review copy and including me on the blog tour. You can follow the other stops using the banner below.

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