- Barbara Copperthwaite
Review: THE ICE TWINS, S.K Tremayne
"Each page you turn is the turn of a screw slowly, very slowly, ramping up the tension"
One of Sarah’s daughters died. But can she be sure which one? A terrifying psychological thriller perfect for fans of THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN.
A year after one of their identical twin daughters, Lydia, dies in an accident, Angus and Sarah Moorcraft move to the tiny Scottish island Angus inherited from his grandmother, hoping to put together the pieces of their shattered lives.
But when their surviving daughter, Kirstie, claims they have mistaken her identity – that she, in fact, is Lydia – their world comes crashing down once again.
As winter encroaches, Angus is forced to travel away from the island for work, Sarah is feeling isolated, and Kirstie (or is it Lydia?) is growing more disturbed. When a violent storm leaves Sarah and her daughter stranded, Sarah finds herself tortured by the past – what really happened on that fateful day one of her daughters died?
If I tell you this is a book in which very little happens, it will sound boring. No one could accuse The Ice Twins of being boring. Absorbing, haunting, heartbreaking and disturbing…all of those things, most definitely, but boring it is not.
So much of the action, though, happens in your imagination, and that is what makes this so clever and so very powerful.
It works on many levels, too. Is it a psychological thriller? Is it a ghost story? Is it a gothic tale? Or the story of a domestic crime? Somehow, this intelligent and complex novel manages to be all those things, yet never feels confused.
Each page you turn is the turn of a screw slowly, very slowly, ramping up the tension, as the Moorcroft’s marriage falls apart. As Kirstie/Lydia changes from one moment to the next. As secrets are revealed and conclusions jumped to. Expectations are built up that make the reader believe they are being led in one direction, only for things to switch around. The Ice Twins contains enough twists and turns to give you whiplash.
And the ending…how I wish I could tell you about the ending. It will give you shivers, and stay with you for a very long time. But you won’t mind being haunted by this clever, psychological ghost story.
Incidentally, I’m really not sure why they mention The Girl on the Train in the blurb. It is nothing like it, has no connections with it, and might mislead some buyers. Why must every book be compared with another book? The Ice Twins is a unique work of fiction and deserves to be celebrated as such.