A breathless romance in the heat of Thailand proves an unwitting catalyst for the re-opening of a Pandoras box of family suffering that begins to consume any hopes of long lasting happiness for Noah.
The magnetic pull of Alice is a subconscious conduit to the past as her flame haired allure bears an inescapable resemblance to Lizzie Burdett, whose unexplained disappearance 12 years previously has cast a long shadow over the Carruso family and created an emotional void between Noah and his brother Tom.
This shattering of sibling relations and the unrelenting pressure on Noah to assume responsibility for the family restaurant business inevitably begins to diminish the emotional acuity he longs for in his nascent relationship with Alice, yet Alice has her own demons to slay….
Sarah Foster attempts to bring together the many moving pieces of the key
protagonists complicated pasts in the manner of a mountaineer scaling a cloud
shrouded peak. Each narrative step reveals another layer of previously hidden
trauma but through this miasma of apparent hopelessness the belief in their
relationship remains constant and it’s only by looking beyond the darkness
that they are prevented from falling into oblivion.
The characterisation of Noah and Tom evokes the fragility of youth stripped of
parental protection. Raf and Cathy’s obsession with the reputation and
ultimate legacy of the restaurant leaves no room for protecting their childrens’
innocence and it’s only when it’s too late that they realise financial security can
not replace the emptiness of separation.
The inquest into the presumed death of Lizzie Burdett is the opportunity for
closure yet it’s also provides a stage for Noah to give vent to years of
fulminating anger and anguish that he has felt towards his brother. But the
path to the truth is not always straightforward and as the jigsaw finally falls
into place we realise that the extinguishing of life can come in many forms…
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