Haunting story of a woman, a man, his child, and the child's efforts to get rid of the woman. Sort of an Enlish Bad Seed. I throughly enjoyed the writing of Ms. Livesey.
For the most part, Celia Gilchrist is living a happy life. Despite feeling slightly lonely and a bit like a third wheel when she's around her friends, Celia is nevertheless quite content living on her own, answering to no one else - except her cat Tobias. Yes, life is good for Celia Gilchrist.
When she meets Stephen, Celia is ecstatic and believes that she has finally found the right man to share her life. He is a wonderful man - a math teacher at her friend Deirdre's school - very solicitous of Celia, and a loving father to his daughter Jenny. So she moves in with Stephen and Jenny, and happily takes her place within their lovely ready-made family.
Yet, shortly after Celia moves in, things begin to go subtly, menacingly wrong. Money disappears, a sweater of Celia's is ruined; small, commonplace lies escalate into awkward confrontations. Ms. Livesey's debut novel is a stunning and affecting portrait of jealousy and fear, devotion and the desire to be loved.
I was absolutely captivated by this book. The plot was utterly believable to me, and the characters were well-developed and fairly jumped off the page - at least in my opinion. I really didn't want this book to end, and I found myself wondering what would happen next. I would give this book an A+! and am happy to say that I recently obtained another book by Margot Livesey - The Missing World: A Novel.
I have never read it. I am cleaning out the house.