Madeleine Frank and her beloved husband Forrest were living an ideal life on a houseboat in Key West, Florida. After his tragic death during a hurricane, the deeply grieving widow returned to the English city of Bath where she grew up. The story picks up about eight years later.
Madeleine is now a humanistic psychotherapist in partnership with John, her best friend. She also is a painter of pictures that all have to do with ants. In the meantime, Madeleine often visits her mother, a practitioner of Santera, who is leaving in a mental hospital, and also makes weekly visits to Edmund, a mentally and physically abusive inmate serving a life term in prison.
With everything else she has going on; she is involved in an unsatisfactory relationship with Gordon a much younger man. Her father is the renowned artist, Neville Frank, with whom she has an estranged relationship.
As a therapist, she begins seeing Rachel Locklear, a young mother struggling with an abusive relationship, fearful for what will happen to her young son. Madeleine soon finds herself becoming too deeply involved with the younger woman who strangely reminds the therapist of someone she knows. As the story progresses, the abusive nature of those around Madeleine increases, toward her and themselves.
Bloodprint by Kitty Sewell was a mixed bag for me. The story started out with great promise, but got mired in a couple of subplots that quickly slowed my interest in the storyline. The twists and turns of the story are at times interesting, but at other times bothersome. Many parts of the novel, such as Madeleine’s visits to Edmund, could have been left out and the novel would have been just as good, if not better.
There is a strong psychological element to the story, but unfortunately the two women come across as needy. Most of the men are, for the most part, abusive with no socially redeeming value. The two women do show their strength later on, but the scenes often seem unnatural.
This is a harsh, violent novel. The author makes good use of back story written in italics providing the reader with a deeper understanding of the mental and emotional condition of the two women.
Psychological thriller fans will enjoy reading Bloodprint while others may want to avoid reading this type of story. The end does finish nicely, with the hope that all is well.
A special thank you goes to Simon and Schuster for providing a complimentary copy of Bloodprint for review. If you are interested in purchasing a copy of Bloodprint, it is available at Amazon.com.