Pennance by Claire Ashton

Pennance

Claire Ashton

Set in Pennance in Cornwall, this book is a slow burner about family breakdown, loneliness, guilt, jealousy, pain, fear, love and penance. Sparked off by a tragic accident, a chance meeting between two women brings about a dangerous liaison and unleashes a terrible vengeance. Piquant, evocative and sensual in places, this mystery novel sometimes overindulges in adjectives which, for me, affected the pace.

Extract

I took a large spoonful and blew on it, almost tasting its saltiness on my lips. I poured the warm liquid into my mouth and let it run down the sides of my tongue, eliciting a flood of saliva at the fresh flavours. The rich tangy tomato rolled across the top and the saltiness of the bacon rippled across the taste buds around the tip and edges. The fresh herby vapours of basil and parsley infused my nose and the warmth of the tomato gravy seemed to fill my head. I closed my eyes as the warm feeling rose up my face.

Parallels
  • Notes on a Scandal by Zoe Heller
  • The Children's Hour by Lillian Hellman
  • After Mrs Hamilton by Clare Ashton