Sisters of Mercy – Caroline Overington

Posted: December 16, 2012 in general fiction, Review

Snow Delaney is in prison, and convicted by public opinion of her sister’s murder.  She starts writing to Jack Fawcett, a journalist, to convince him of her innocence so he can set the record straight.  Snow had no knowledge of her sister’s, Agnes Moore, existence until her father died.  He left a million dollar estate to be shared between them.  Agnes was bought up in an orphanage in England, told her parents had died WWII.  Instead they had migrated to Australia, believing Agnes had been adopted.  Thrilled to have discovered she had a sister Agnes flew to Australia, where she vanished in a dust storm after meeting Snow.

The story is told though Snow and Jack’s letters, his recounting of meetings with Agnes’s daughter, and his digging into Snow’s past. As the story progresses and Jack gets a fuller understanding of Snow, you see the horror of the treatment of mentally ill people in the past through her story as a wide-eyed nurse out to change the system.  It shows her progression to respite carer for physically disabled children and the chilling lack of empathy Snow has.

I like resolution in books – the good guys winning, case solved, all loose ends wrapped up.  This book had none of that but it’s a compelling read and I highly recommend it.  You make up our own mind at the ending and I think I know what happened, but there’s a feeling of what-if.  I’m going to track down and read all other books by this author; she’s now a must-read for me!


Supplied by Random House

Reviewed by Jan

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