London – The Girl with No Past – Kathryn Croft

girl with no past

Why a booktrail?

2000s and the past: What were you like as a teenager. Remember what really went on?

Story

Leah can run but she can’t hide. She hides out in her London flat and lives a rather solitary life with only her books for company. What might sound ideal for any bookworm soon reveals itself to be anything but and Leah is actually hiding from her past and is very lonely.

When she meets Julian, it would see that life is getting better, but things change when on the anniversary of that day she is trying so hard to forget, she receives an anonymous card telling her that someone knows the truth and that they’re after Leah.

What did happen all those years ago, What and who is Leah and where will it all end?

Place and Setting

Could this be Leah's solitary area of London? There is a Garrett Road but there's no Allfarthing Road where she lives but there is Allfarthing Avenue
Could this be Leah’s solitary area of London? There is a Garrett Road but there’s no Allfarthing Road where she lives but there is Allfarthing Avenue

London present day

Life in a London flat with books for company might seem ideal but it is far from it. Leah lives an anonymous life with no social life and outside contact. She is on the run and hiding from herself with no friends and a job she can do with her eyes closed although it in a library!. Living in the big smoke if you want to ‘disappear’ seems relatively easy for despite the numbers of people living there, you can feel the most alone you have ever felt. Still that suits Leah well. She blends into the London landscape she says. Perfect

The setting in Leah’s world is more like a social desert with the winds blowing in the odd man in the library who she talks to, and a dating website when she tries to contact with the world outside. But contact opens up a whole new danger.

The Past – At School

Leah at school is a carefree girl with a boyfriend Adam who she idolises to the point of putting him on a pedestal. But the picture slowly forms of a school life that was not so perfect after all and a day in particular…

Teenagers do what teenagers do, but these guys like to not only push boundaries, cross them and more.

What did she do, or what happened that was so awful? The story of her high school days are dizzying and complex as one piece falls into place one after the other and to appreciate how it all fits, you have to stand back and take in the bigger picture. Everyone remembers their school days but some memories won’t stay buried for long. This story of teenage misdemeanors comes back and bites you right where it hurts.

Review

That cover got me first. That tunnel and the way the no is smudged to suggest something very blurred and wrong.  A place to have secrets and a dark tunnel with a chilling silhouette that grabbed me from the word go.

I thought I would like Leah – works with books, lives with books but just like the characters, you think you know someone… I don’t want to say too much for fear of suggesting things away. Suffice to say there were a lot of reasons to have an interest in Leah and to want to know more about her. The novel is mainly set in present day London but the story told in flashbacks to the past was a real head spinner. A person’s past can affect them in many different ways and those teenager years…what they can do to a person! There are more than a red herring or two to quash any assumptions you think you might have when reading this.

It’s clever the way the author has written this -making me feel so uncertain about the main character. It’s fast and pacey too  – a real mix of emotions wrapped up  in one girl’s life. The ending did not disappoint either and maybe it’s just my natural noisiness but I really did want to know what, why, how and when and those questions never stopped throughout. I love a book which takes you by surprise and this one certainly did.

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