Following her acclaimed debut Little Darlings, Melanie Golding's newest folkloric suspense is a spine-tingling twist on Celtic mythology.
One dark December night, in a small seaside town, a little girl is found abandoned. When her mother finally arrives, authorities release the pair, believing it to be an innocent case of a toddler running off.
Gregor, a seemingly single man, is found bludgeoned and left for dead in his apartment, but the discovery of children's toys raises more questions than answers.
Every night, Ruby gazes into Gregor’s apartment, leading to the discovery of his secret family: his unusually silent daughter and his mentally unstable wife, Constance, who insists that she is descended from the mythological Selkies. She begs Ruby to aid in finding the sealskin that Gregor has hidden from her, making it impossible to return to her people.
DS Joanna Harper's investigation into Gregor’s assault leads her to CCTV footage of the mother-daughter pair from town. Harper realizes she knows the woman almost as well as she knows herself: it's her estranged daughter, Ruby. No matter the depth of Ruby’s involvement, she knows she will choose her daughter over her career.
Steeped in local legend and exploring the depths of what it means to be a mother, Melanie Golding's newest novel is "a lyrical and atmospheric folktale for the modern age." (Bustle, on Little Darlings)
Early in British author Golding's intriguing paranormal mystery set in an unnamed English seaside town, Det. Sgt. Joanna Harper, last seen in Little Darlings, and a police constable break into the flat of Gregor Franks, where they find Gregor floating in his bathtub, barely alive and with a traumatic head injury. Flashback: after discovering a disturbing family secret, emotionally vulnerable Ruby winds up in a government sponsored flat, from which she watches her handsome neighbor, Gregor, who lives with mentally unstable Constance and their two-year-old daughter, Leonie. After befriending the charming Gregor, Ruby begins to look after Leonie while Constance spends her days barely conscious, mumbling stories of her homeland across the sea and its mythical community of seals. Constance longs to return to her clan, but she can't without her magical coat, which Gregor has kept hidden. When Ruby realizes Gregor has a dark side and Constance may not be as crazy as she seems, she helps Constance plot her and Leonie's escape from Gregor. Golding smoothly mixes folklore with an insightful exploration of motherhood. This offbeat tale should win her new fans. Agent: Madeleine Milburn, Madeleine Milburn Literary (U.K).