The Art of Drowning by Frances Fyfield
Witness Impulse ASIN: B00CD36GH8
Reviewed by Sheri B. for Say What? Savannah Mae October 2013
4 Stars-Brilliantly Written
The Art of Drowning is a gripping thriller by Frances Fyfield that takes place in London, England. When Rachel Doe meets Ivy Wiseman her world will never be the same. The two strike up a mutually enchanted friendship and become inseparable in spite of the fact that they are complete opposites. Rachel is a socially awkward and sheltered accountant that “lives by the rules”. Ivy is a free-spirit – she’s full of life, does what she wants and is beholden to no one, supporting herself by maintaining odd jobs ranging from life-modeling for an art academy to cleaning offices on the night shift. The two become roommates and Rachel is soon “adopted” by Ivy’s entire family.
Rachel learns that there is more to Ivy’s world than meets the eye. Ivy has an ex-husband, Carl, and a son named Sam that she hasn’t seen in years, since the drowning death of her daughter. Ivy has no idea where Carl and Sam are living and when she shares the stories of Carl’s cruelty towards her and her family, Rachel is determined to find them to reunite mother and son.
All the while, mysterious events are occurring in and around London with seemingly no relationship to the main story but leads you to believe that something is connected and just not right. The tension builds dramatically as the two stories come together for a climatic page-turning ending.
I loved the characters in this book. They are very well developed, complex and real. I had a love-hate relationship with each of the characters. Ivy could be enraging one minute and the kindest, most loving person you’d ever met the next minute. The intensity of the story and the characters definitely keeps you turning the pages. The Art of Drowning is brilliantly written and the in-depth story keeps you guessing until the very end.
About the Author: I grew up in rural Derbyshire, but my adult life has been spent mostly in London, with long intervals in Norfolk and Deal, all inspiring places. I was educated mostly in convent schools; then studied English and went on to qualify as a solicitor, working for what is now the Crown Prosecution Service, thus learning a bit about murder at second hand. Years later, writing became the real vocation, although the law and its ramifications still haunt me and inform many of my novels.
I’m a novelist, short story writer for magazines and radio, sometime Radio 4 contributor, (Front Row, Quote Unquote, Night Waves,) and presenter of Tales from the Stave. When I’m not working (which is as often as possible), I can be found in the nearest junk/charity shop or auction, looking for the kind of paintings which enhance my life. Otherwise, with a bit of luck, I’m relaxing by the sea with a bottle of wine and a friend or two.