Silver and Salt by Elanor Dymott
Published April 6, 2017 by Jonathan Cape
Genres Fiction, Adult
On the death of her father, a celebrated photographer, Ruthie returns to his villa in remote, wild Greece. After 15 years in exile she is welcomed by her older sister, Vinny. Together they build a fragile happiness in their haven above the sea, until the arrival of an English family at a neighboring cottage, and one young girl in particular, triggers a chain of events that will plunge both women back into their dark pasts, and entirely derail their present lives. This is a story of love and violence, and of what happens when a child is lied to by someone who has their trust.
Max is a photographer, who marries Sophia, an opera singer, and then takes her away from her career in London and on his work trips with him. Eventually the couple have two daughters and while Max is frequently traveling, when he is home, he is abusive to both his wife and his children. This eventually pushes Sophia into mental illness and Beatrice, Max’s sister, eventually comes to care for the children. Their two daughters Vinny and Ruthie, are very different; while Vinny is older and focused on school, Ruthie is younger and still craves her father’s attention, although he continues to be abusive. After their father passes away, the sisters meet at his villa in Greece to reconnect. Things are going fairly well until a family arrives at a neighboring villa, which triggers both the girls to remember the violence from their past.
I typically stray away from adult or contemporary fiction, but this book sounded interesting so I gave it a chance and I did enjoy it. The book does deal with some very serious issues, such as abuse and mental illness, so reader be warned. This is the first I have read by the author and enjoyed her writing style. The book moves along at a steady pace and I felt like I got to know both Vinny and Ruthie fairly well. Overall, I enjoyed the book and would recommend it to anyone who is a fan of this genre, just be prepared that it does deal with some hard topics. Thank you to the publisher for sending me an advanced reading copy of the book.