Mind of Winter by Laura Kasischke
Christmas morning, Holly Judge wakes up with a single thought: Something has followed them home from Russia. Holly checks in on her adopted daughter from Russia, Tatiana, but everything looks ok and she goes back to sleep. Her husband wakes up a few hours later in a panic that no one has woken up yet and he needs to pick his parents up from the airport. He rushes out in to a snow storm to get them, leaving Holly and Tatty alone. Tatty is acting odd, even for a teenager, and Holly starts to get calls that her guests aren't coming over because the weather is getting so bad. Holly remembers the time she and her husband spent in Russia before bringing Tatty home, as Tatty acts more and more bizarre as the day progresses.
This whole story takes place in less than a day and starts with the repeated phrase of how something followed them home from Russia. This phrase was repeated to the point where I was actually getting annoyed with the author. After the 4th or 5th time I wanted to say I get it! Something followed them home from Russia! I seemed to maintain this level of annoyance with the book throughout the whole thing. In addition to the upfront repetition, I think the additional annoyance was because I'm not a patient reader and you definitely need to be one for this book. Pages were dedicated to discussions and thoughts that could have happened in a paragraph. Should Holly answer the phone when the number shows up as Unavailable? It takes multiple pages to decide.
Despite the underlying annoyance I felt with this book, I couldn't put it down. Rarely does a book annoy me but capture my attention in such a way at the same time. I wanted to know what was going on because everything about this book felt off and you knew that the explanation was waiting at the end. While I had some idea of what the ending was going to be like, there were still surprises that left me feeling satisfied.
Really, the only other item that had me scratching my head a bit was the character Holly. She very quickly descends in to madness and I was left wondering what her real personality was. It's hard to gauge how much someone is losing it without knowing what their base line is.
Despite the few items that I've pointed out, I would still recommend this book to thriller fans. I would only advise to try and be more patient with the book than I was and you'll probably enjoy it more!
Thanks to TLC Book Tour for letting me be a part of this tour!
First Line: "She woke up late that morning, and knew: Something had followed them home from Russia."