Thursday, February 11, 2021

Book Review: The Lost Swimmer, by Ann Turner

Guest review by: Becki Bayley

At least being injured had meant an end to mediation with Priscilla. She had cancelled further sessions on the pretense that I needed time to recuperate, but I suspected it was also because of the investigation and I couldn’t help thinking of that as one silver lining.

On my first day back, Rachel and I hurried across to the administration building to a full staff meeting called by Priscilla. I was short of breath from the exertion, but other than that, my body was stronger and I was definitely on the mend.

When we arrived in the airy room I glanced about. Since I had been away it was like a black hole had opened at Coastal and swallowed all the elderly professors. Old turtleneck McCall had taken early retirement, so too Oliver Yeats, who had never really coped with his downsized office. They’d both phoned me to say goodbye and the conversations were incalculably sad. There had been no official farewell and I’d been too unwell to fight Lisa Clements, who, to our collective horror, had been appointed Acting Head in my absence. And so the professors had just faded into the ether, sent off with their packages after thirty years of service without so much as a thank you.

Rebecca Wilding is convinced her husband is having an affair, but there’s no proof. She knows she’s doing her job and doing it well, but they’re investigating her for fraud. The truth is becoming more and more confusing.

Official synopsis:
Rebecca Wilding, an archaeology professor, traces the past for a living.

But suddenly, truth and certainty is turning against her. Rebecca is accused of serious fraud, and worse, she suspects – she knows – that her husband, Stephen, is having an affair.

Desperate to find answers, Rebecca leaves with Stephen for Greece, Italy and Paris, where she can uncover the conspiracy against her, and hopefully win Stephen back to her side, where he belongs. There’s too much at stake—her love, her work, her family.

But on the idyllic Amalfi Coast, Stephen goes swimming and doesn’t come back.

In a swirling daze of panic and fear, Rebecca is dealt with fresh allegations. And with time against her, she must uncover the dark secrets that stand between her and Stephen, and the deceit that has chased her halfway around the world.

This book read a lot like literary fiction. The story flowed through Rebecca’s life and contemplations about what it all might mean. In her personal life, she was dealing with her own suspicions and concerns without proof that any of it was really in crisis. In her professional life, she expected things to be rather uneventful, until she’s accused of a series of actions that could cost her all of the progress and existence of her career. Was it possible that some of her worries were just her own anxiety? On the other hand, is there something to worry about even when she knows she hasn’t done anything wrong?

The characters and pacing of the story were just right. While the kangaroo attack never seemed to fit a lot with the rest of the book (?), its results did influence the way it all progressed. And what would a book taking place in Australia really be without a good kangaroo attack?

Overall, I’d give this book a high 3.5 out of 5 stars. The ending was a bit anticlimactic after all the build up, but I’m not sure how it could have been different. I’d recommend this book for those who like contemporary fiction.

{click HERE to purchase}

Becki Bayley works in finance and legal. She’s learning more every day. Find out what she’s doing in her relaxing hours on Instagram, where she posts as PoshBecki.


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