Published by Orenda Books
Ebook:18 May 2017 | Paperback: 3 July 2017
About the book:
When India falls to her death from a bridge over a railway, her sister Poppy returns home to Brighton for the first time in years. Unconvinced by official explanations, Poppy begins her own investigation into India’s death. But the deeper she digs, the closer she comes to uncovering deeply buried secrets. Could Matthew Temple, the boyfriend she abandoned, be involved? And what of his powerful and wealthy parents, and his twin sister, Ana? Enter the mysterious and ethereal Jenny: the girl Poppy discovers after hacking into India’s laptop. What is exactly is she hiding, and what did India find out about her? Taking the reader on a breathless ride through the winding lanes of Brighton, into its vibrant party scene and inside the homes of its wellheeled families, The Other Twin is startling and up-to-the-minute thriller about the social-media world, where resentments and accusations are played out online, where identities are made and remade, and where there is no such thing as truth…
When Poppy is told that her younger sister India has committed suicide by jumping off a railway bridge, she returns to the family home in Brighton in a state of shock. Some five years before, something happened in Poppy’s life which made family relationships difficult but India’s death has totally floored her and disbelief mixed with feelings of guilt, make her determined to discover the truth. India had an online blog and her blog posts have an unsettling feel to them and it’s these, together with some accompanying comments, which give Poppy cause for concern.
There are a lot of characters here to be suspicious of – both family and friends. A separate and, rather concerning, strand interrupts the chapters. How this fits into the story does become clear but this adds weight to Poppy’s belief that there is some other explanation behind her sister’s death.
Both personal and family relationships are under the spotlight and it seems that almost everyone has something to hide. Poppy’s investigations lead her into Brighton’s LGBT community as well as having to come to terms with her own actions in the past.
The Other Twin is a very complex and confidently written debut and the subject nature of the story certainly gives it an edgy and relevant feel. The short chapters (which I am always a huge fan of) make for a fast read. The author clearly knows Brighton well and was able to provide an atmospheric sense of place both for the well known and also the seedier parts of town. Whilst I found the first part of the story to have a slower pace, it does pick up and becomes an intriguing and twisted read that surprises with each new revelation. I was really excited to read this especially after reading the blurb and the cover is stunning but I have to admit that I didn’t love it as much as I expected to. It has received many enthusiastic and positive reviews and I can understand why as the writing is very good. I think for me part of the issue was that I didn’t feel there was enough information about India to make me really care about her and for me she seemed a rather shadowy figure. I would have liked to have known more about her as a person and about her life. My other problem was with Poppy. For some reason I just didn’t gel with her and for much of the story I felt she was an immature and at times annoying character; acting more like a truculent teenager than a grown woman, although I did start to revise my opinion of her at the end. I’m sure the Other Twin is going to be a huge success and deservedly so. I just think that here it’s a case of its not you, it’s me!
My thanks to Karen at Orenda for the paperback copy to review and to Anne Cater for the invitation to take part in the blog tour
About the author:
Lucy V. Hay is a novelist, script editor and blogger who helps writers via her Bang2write consultancy. She is the associate producer of Brit
Thrillers Deviation (2012) and Assassin(2015), both starring Danny Dyer. Lucy is also head reader for the London Screenwriters’ Festival and has written two non-fiction books, Writing & Selling Thriller Screenplays, plus its follow-up Drama Screenplays. She lives in Devon with her husband, three children, six cats and five African Land Snails.