Portraits of Celina


Sue Whiting

Walker Books

9781922077479ISBN: 9781922077479

RRP: $16.95

Age: 13+

Key Words: Ghost Story, Revenge, Mystery

Published: 1st April 2013

Reviewer: Kylie Calwell

After the death of her father Bayley finds herself living in an old family home in the country that has been deserted for years. It was a move she isn’t happy about, neither is her older sister. The house has a history though. Celina O’Malley, a distant relative was 16 when she disappeared forty years ago. Now Bayley is sleeping in her room, wearing her old clothes and disturbingly, starting to hear her voice.

Bayley thinks she might just be loosing it but she can’t get away from Celina. Just what does Celina want? Bayley is driven to find out. As things get stranger and stranger, Bayley’s behaviour threatens a new relationship and she starts to wonder just who will suffer because Celina won’t leave her alone.

Bayley is the heart of this story. She has been her family’s strength but in the process it has left her fragile and it is this fragility that is drawn to Celina’s story. The overarching narrative of a family struggling to come to terms with a loss is painful and it is so easy to identify with Bayley’s anguish. She drives the story along, and you are helpless to pull away from either the modern tale or the forty year old one. Her family provide the colour, the layers to the story as it all spirals out of control. Oliver, the boy next door, gives the story much needed lightness and hope.

This is a ghost story, a revenge story, even a love story. It is dark, enthralling and compelling. Well worth a read.

Advertisements

What do you think?

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: