Sewell, the Swedish-born wife of a physician, pens a dark and
intriguing first novel about a young doctor whose tragic mistake
during a child's surgery leads him to run to a far corner of the
world.Dafydd Woodruff's marriage to Isabel has already hit rocky
shores with the couple's passionless attempts to conceive a baby.
In fact, Dafydd isn't really sure he wants to be a father in the
first place, which is why a letter from Moose Creek, written in a
childish hand, comes as such a surprise. The message, from
13-year-old Miranda, claims Dafydd, a Welsh doctor, is the father
of Miranda and her twin brother Mark. Dafydd relocated to Moose
Creek, a miserable hardscrabble town in the Canadian sub-Arctic,
for work, after the botched surgery. Like all misfits who've come
to Moose Creek to shed demons, he finds life in the place
depressing and difficult. But it is Sheila Hailey, the hospital's
head nurse, that turns the experience sinister. Hailey - a
beautiful but cruel and manipulative woman - makes life difficult
for the contrite Dafydd, but she also wants him sexually. No choir
boy, Dafydd doesn't usually avoid sex - Sewell's novel is laced
with erotic scenes - it's just that he's not interested in Sheila.
When DNA tests come back positive, Dafydd, who is certain he never
had sex with Sheila, leaves his crumbling marriage to return to
Moose Creek and work through the puzzle. While there he encounters
the nasty Sheila, an old friend fallen on very hard times, his
newfound family and a few ghosts that won't go away. Compelling
fiction from a newcomer, but readers will find the settings - both
in Wales and Canada - to be extremely bleak, and they'll wonder how
someone as nasty as Sewell's overdrawn villain could manage to
survive with so many enemies. (Kirkus Reviews)
"Dear Dr Woodruff, I hope you don't mind me writing to you. I think
I'm your daughter. My name is Miranda and I have a twin brother,
Mark ...' Welsh surgeon Dafydd Woodruff's life is about to be blown
apart by the unexpected news that, fourteen years before, he
fathered twins. But that's impossible according to Dafydd since,
despite the subsequent DNA evidence which would appear to prove the
girl's case, he's never slept with the twins' mother, the icily
formidable Sheila Hailey who worked in the hospital at Moose Creek,
an isolated town buried deep in the Canadian wilderness where
Dafydd spent a career break fifteen years ago. With his marriage in
jeopardy and his medical career under threat, Dafydd takes a flight
back to the remote, ice-bound community of Moose Creek to make
sense of the impossible, and to confront demons he thought he'd
left behind years ago ...
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