It has been some weeks since I finished The First Day of Spring and it has taken that long for me to gather my thoughts and react to what I had read. I really wasn’t prepared for this book. I chose it because of the title and bright inviting cover (not the final UK publication cover I might add!). And honestly with everything else that is going on in the world at the moment I’ve only been reading books that are essentially light and fluffy. No offence to the other authors I’ve read is intended here – escapism is what has been needed over this year so far.
Chrissie is a neglected child. She knows how to steal sweets from the corner shop without being caught, she volunteers for the milk monitor role at school to get access to extra milk, she knows the best hiding places for hide and seek and the best wall for doing handstands up against it. Now she has a secret and she can feel it fizzing inside her like a Sherbert Dibdab. She never feels like this and the power it brings with it is unlike anything else in her life.
Fifteen years later Julia is trying to be the perfect mother to five year old Molly. She is always fretting and worrying, about routines, about meal times, about school shoes, what the other mums at the school gate think about her. The most important thing she worries about is that Social Services will take her daughter away. When the phone calls start Julia is too afraid to answer them. She knows that her past has caught up with her again.
Nancy Tucker has done an amazing job in this book, her fiction debut. The First Day of Spring is a dark and intense read. It has you gripped from the get go as the book opens with Chrissie’s shocking confession. Written from her own childish perspective her views on life and her surroundings are skewed by the lies told to her and the lack of care and love in her life. It isn’t the easiest story to read but it just gets under your skin and no matter how distressing the narrative gets you just have to keep reading to find out how it ends up.
Supplied by Net Galley and Random House UK in exchange for an honest review.
Prolific reader, enthusiastic theatre and movie-goer and ex-Olivier Awards judge who spent twenty years working in the music industry in London. Sharing my house with a gorgeous cockapoo called Harry who has taken over completely.
I love sharing my favourite books with friends - nearly always spoiler-free as I hate reading a synopsis of the whole book in other reviews.