How can you become so irritated by a character that it actually keeps you reading a novel. This was the case when I picked up this novel and started to get to know Annie Trebarwith.
She has no ties at all, no family although she is clearly still very much grieving for her mother, she thinks she is a free spirit and has no need to need to be tied down to anything or anyone.
A letter arrives, inviting her to her family home, to her great-aunt Alice who she never knew existed. With nothing else to do, whilst being between jobs and between men, Annie makes the trip down to Cornwall.
Annie arrives in a place she think as the back of beyond, with no phone signal and certainly no vibrant night life. She arrives into a community. Something Annie has no experience of whatsoever and she finds the thought of it frightening and curious in equal measure.
As the health of her great-aunt is somewhat precarious, Annie decides that she will stay on a bit longer to be able to perhaps help. To keep her occupied, she does in fact embrace community life by becoming involved in the reboot of the local choir. Its past tainted with tragedy.
But as finds out going over past events can sometimes to reveal some skeletons which are perhaps best kept hidden. Annie goes from being a unlikeable character to one that has time to take stock, to reflect and question everything she has been told and what she believes.
Annie finds much more by the sea than an aging aunt and a quiet life.
This is an excellent debut novel and a story which captures you and takes you on a journey. There was some predictability to perhaps one part of the story for me, but that was only a minor part as I was swept away with the weather, the scenery and the music of the choir.
I look forward to returning to hear the choir sing again by the sea.
Thank you to the publisher and netgalley for allowing me the opportunity to read this book.
Annie’s Lovely Choir by the Sea is out now.