Today I’m thrilled to be hosting the blog tour for A Song of Isolation by Michael J Malone which is published today by Orenda Books.
Film star Amelie Hart is the darling of the silver screen, appearing on the front pages of every newspaper. But at the peak of her fame she throws it all away for a regular guy with an ordinary job. The gossip columns are aghast: what happened to the woman who turned heads wherever she went?
Any hope the furore will die down are crushed when Amelie’s boyfriend Dave is arrested on charges of child sexual abuse. Dave strongly asserts his innocence, and when Amelie refuses to denounce him, the press furore quickly turns into physical violence, and she has to flee the country.
While Dave is locked up with the most depraved men in the country and Amelie is hiding on the continent, Damaris, the victim at the centre of the story, is also isolated – a child trying to make sense of an adult world…
Breathtakingly brutal, dark and immensely moving, A Song of Isolation looks beneath the magpie glimmer of celebrity to uncover a sinister world dominated by greed and lies, and the unfathomable destruction of innocent lives… in an instant.
Once again I am blown away by the calibre of writing that Orenda Books publishes. A Song of Isolation is superb. At times deeply uncomfortable and yet strangely compelling, this was one story that I could not put down.
Amelie is a superstar with an ‘ordinary’ partner. Think Julia Roberts in Notting Hill but without the warm, romantic comedy. Amelie has turned her back on her career, hiding away and craving a quiet, ordinary life with her boyfriend, Dave. But soon her cosy new world is left in shatters when Dave is arrested for child abuse and her own dark past comes back to haunt her.
There is something deeply unnerving about this story. Of course it would be; the subject matter is, of course, something that is every parents worse nightmare . Dave is accused of abusing their neighbours daughter. The girl, Damaris, is a somewhat unreliable witness. She is unsure what has happened and is heavily influence by those around her. They say it happened, so it must have. My heart really went out to her. What Michael does is raise a question mark over everything right from the start. Dave is a character that I liked, I felt sympathy for him and a part of me believed that he was just the victim of a misunderstanding but it soon becomes clear that there is so much more going on and it’s absolutely gripping watching events unfold.
This is indeed a beautifully constructed, well thought out thriller but it is also a book that makes you stop and think. a reminder that we can often judge before we know what the reality is, sometimes we never really know the full story. It also highlights how a life can be ruined in a moment, and what is lost can never be recovered. Celebrity, it seems, is not all it’s cracked up to be.
A brilliant novel, and one that I thoroughly recommend.
Thanks so much to Anne Cater for inviting me to take part in this blog tour and to the lovely team at Orenda Books for a digital copy to review.
About the author
Michael Malone is a prize-winning poet and author who was born and brought up in the heart of Burns’ country. He has published over 200 poems in literary magazines throughout the UK, including New Writing Scotland, Poetry Scotland and Markings. Blood Tears, his bestselling debut novel won the Pitlochry Prize from the Scottish Association of Writers. His psychological thriller, A Suitable Lie, was a number-one bestseller, and the critically acclaimed House of Spines, After He Died and In the Absence of Miracles soon followed suit. A former Regional Sales Manager (Faber & Faber) he has also worked as an IFA and a bookseller. Michael lives in Ayr.