Folly by Laurie R. King


SuspenseFolly by Laurie R. King

FollyLaurie R. King; Bantam Books 2001WorldCatRae Newborn is in her 50’s and starting her life over again. She has had mental break downs and suicide attempts. Her second husband and daughter died in an auto accident a little over a year ago. Her first daughter, Tamra, doesn’t like or trust her. She has been discharged from the hospital and although her mental state is still precarious, her doctor has let her move to Washington state.

She inherited an isolated small island in the San Juan island cluster off the coast. Her reclusive uncle had built a home there in the 1920’s which then burned down. Rae has decided to rebuild that home. She plans on building it from scratch the same as the original building – if she doesn’t decide to join her husband Alan and daughter Bella, instead.

Rae has demons to battle. She has her very real precarious mental illness. But she is an artist. When she takes drugs to control it, she loses her creativity. She has her physical health to regain. She had also been injured in the automobile accident, plus was attacked a few weeks after the funerals. She has her sense of self to find. She also has to refind her social self as well as wanting her seclusion. But Rae doesn’t know she also has an outside threat. Someone intends to harm her again.

Although this book is classified as a mystery, it is really a novel of self discovery. The main character has a very real, well documented, incurable mental illness. She can control it, overcome it, learn to embrace it, but not rid herself of it. I thought the actual mystery, the stalker looking for revenge, was only the sideline story to this book. Instead I found it to be a study of a character coming back from the brink, taking control of her life, learning her own strengths, and continuing on despite her past.

This novel also mixes in the recluse uncle’s story enough to build a history of the house that she is rebuilding. Rae learns family secrets. That storyline is interwoven in with the present (using excerpts from his personal journal) and unfortunately tends to confuse her part of the story. I still recommend this novel of self discovery.

More books by Laurie R. King

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