Friday 3 February 2023

Motherthing by Ainslie Hogarth | Book Review

[ad/gifted - I received a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links.]

Motherthing by Ainslie Hogarth
My rating: 4/5
Publisher: Atlantic Books
Publication date: 6th October 2022

Abby Lamb has done it. She's found the Great Good in her husband, Ralph, and together they will start a family and put all the darkness in her childhood to rest. But then the Lambs move in with Ralph's mother, Laura, whose depression has made it impossible for her to live on her own. She's venomous and cruel, especially to Abby, who has a complicated understanding of motherhood given the way her own, now-estranged, mother raised her.

When Laura takes her own life, her ghost starts to haunt Abby and Ralph in very different ways. Ralph is plunged into depression, and Abby is being terrorized by a force intent on taking everything she loves away from her. With everything on the line, Abby must make the ultimate sacrifice in order to prove her adoration to Ralph and break Laura's hold on the family for good.

What on earth did I just read? 

Abby and her husband Ralph move in with Ralph's mother Laura to help look after her. Laura divorced Ralph's father when he was nine years old and Ralph has been her world ever since. She is clearly dependent on him and no one is good enough for her son, especially not Abby. All Abby ever wanted was a mother figure as her relationship with her own mother wasn't great but evidently it isn't something she will get from her mother in law.

After many suicide threats, Laura succeeds and Abby feels like she and Ralph's life will now be better without Laura in it. But Laura isn't really gone. Well, her body might be...but she is in the home still determined not to let her son go. Abby needs to find a way to get rid of Laura once and for all.

There is a real horror and supernatural element to this book. The descriptions of even mundane things are gory and interesting and although the theme is dark with mentions of suicide, depression and sexual assault, the main character of Abby is hilarious.

I loved the running theme of motherhood throughout and it is really clever. Not like anything I've ever read before!

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