The Unravelling by Polly Crosby

Thank you to Alliya at HQ Books (Harper Collins UK) for the opportunity to join the blog tour and a digital proof copy of the book to read and review. This is the first book I’ve read by Polly Crosby.


When Tartelin Brown accepts a job with the reclusive Marianne Stourbridge, she finds herself on a wild island with a mysterious history.

Tartelin is tasked with hunting butterflies for Marianne’s research. But she quickly uncovers something far more intriguing than the curious creatures that inhabit the landscape.

Because the island and Marianne share a remarkable history, and what happened all those years ago has left its scars, and some terrible secrets.

As Tartelin pieces together Marianne’s connection to the island, she must confront her own reasons for being there. Can the two women finally face up to the painful memories that bind them so tightly to the past?

Atmospheric and deeply emotional, The Unravelling is the captivating novel from the author of The Illustrated Child.

Please check out the other reviews too.

My thoughts:

The synopsis intrigued me as soon as I read it, and I’m pleased to say that this book kept me guessing all the way through, full of mysteries and secrets, slowly being revealed one at a time.

Tartelin and Marianne share their stories with the reader, as they start to share a house. Tartelin is looking for a new start after recently losing her adoptive mother and Marianne has returned to the home she lived in before the Army asked everyone to leave. As Tartelin starts to work for Marianne, capturing butterflies (I must admit I found this bit difficult to read), she starts to reflect on her own past and to try to find out more about Marianne’s past. Can they help each other find answers and peace?

This is a beautifully written, dark, heartbreaking read I’m happy to recommend. I haven’t read Polly’s debut novel yet (The Illustrated Child is sat waiting to be read on my kindle) and I definitely need to move it up my reading list.

Author Bio:

Polly Crosby grew up on the Suffolk coast, and now lives with her husband and son in the heart of Norfolk.

Her debut novel, The Illustrated Child (The Book of Hidden Wonders in the US and Australia) is out now.

In 2018, Polly won Curtis Brown Creative’s Yesterday Scholarship, which enabled her to finish her novel. Later the same year, The Illustrated Child was awarded runner-up in the Bridport Prize’s Peggy Chapman Andrews Award for a First Novel. Polly received the Annabel Abbs Creative Writing Scholarship at the University of East Anglia, and is currently working on her third novel.

Twitter: @WriterPolly

Instagram: @polly_crosby



By Karen K is reading

An avid reader from the age of 4. Love escaping into a good novel after a busy day working with students. Mum. Adopter of dogs.

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