Book Review: The Son-in-Law by Charity Norman

On a sharp winter's morning, a man turns his back on prison. Joseph Scott has served his term. He's almost lost everything: his career as a teacher, his wife, the future he'd envisaged. All he has left are his three children but he is not allowed anywhere near them.
This is the story of Joseph, who killed his wife, Zoe. Of their three children who witnessed the event. Of Zoe's parents, Hannah and Frederick, who are bringing up the children and can't forgive or understand Joseph.
They slowly adjust to life without Zoe, until the day Joseph is released from prison...
Charity Norman just gets better. I very much enjoyed her first book, After the Fall but I think that The Son-in-Law is her best yet.
Joseph Scott leaves prison, the only thing he has been thinking about, focusing on, is seeing his three children, Scarlett, Theo and Ben. But does he have the right to see them? Will they want to see him? The last time they saw him they witnessed Joseph kill their mother, Ben was in Zoe's arms as she fell to the floor.
We follow the family as Joseph tries to re-stablish contact. The readers discovers the events leading up to Zoe's death. How Zoe's parents, Hannah and Freddie have cared for the children. How their lives will never be the same again and the way this impacts on their individual futures.
Each chapter is told from the perspective of either Joseph, Hannah or Scarlett so we always get their different view point of the same events. Each character in this book is conflicted and broken, they all loved Zoe and would do anything to have her back but they all know that is not possible.
Scarlett and her brothers are incredibly angry at their father and maybe a little frightened but he is still their Dad. They want to see him but they feel disloyal to Hannah and Frederick who have cared for them and loved them so well.
Hannah and Frederick will never forgive Joseph for taking their daughter and they are prepared to fight him all the way but they also have to remove their feelings and emotions and only consider what is best for the children. But how can they hand over their precious grandchildren to the very man who killed their daughter?
Charity Norman has written a really intricate story that explores the many ties that hold a family together.. The ending had me in tears as it is so clear that everyone wants the children to
be happy and so sacrifices have to be made.
The Son-in-Law is a fantastic read. I think that Charity Norman's book gives you a lot to think about which is one of the best things about reading. The writing style is engaging and you will be gripped from the very beginning. I am already looking forward to Charity Norman's next book.

Dot Scribbles Rating: 5/5
Pages: 304
Publisher: Allen & Unwin

Many thanks to the lovely Sam at Allen and Unwin for sending me a copy of this book to review, The Son-in-Law is out now!


Kim said...

Now, this sounds interesting, Dot, a book to make you think! It's what I have been looking for and is now on my list.

Dot said...

Thanks Kim, I think you would really enjoy Charity Norman's books!

Nikki-ann said...

I'm going to have to stop coming here... I keep finding new books to add to my TBR pile! I really like the sound of this one. Great review! :)

Nadia said...

Dot, this one sounds like a must read! I can't even imagine how hard it must be for his children to want to see their dad, but then know what he is capable of - that is just awful. I definitely need to add this one to my kindle ASAP!!

Dot said...

Nikki-ann- Please don't stop visiting! You should definitely check out Charity Norman's books!

Nadia- I hope you enjoy it, her other books are great too!

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