Cover Image: The Thorn Girl

The Thorn Girl

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Member Reviews

A gripping, intense book that kept me turning the pages. I liked the the way the tension built slowly and the screws tightened on the culprits. It was well written and held my interest from start to finish.
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I got a free advance readers’ copy in exchange for my honest review.

I have heard enough to know that rape can be devastating. Gang rape is something that I think would be even worse. And the consequences of rape can last a lifetime.

In In My Mother’s Name, Laura Elliot shows how devastating the consequences of this can be. Adele Foyle is cleaning out her maternal grandmother’s home when she stumbles across an old diary. It belonged to her mother, Marianne, who died giving birth to her as a teenager. Adele never got the details of her mother’s life from her grandmother, Noreen, and is thrilled when she finds the diary, hoping to read about the love story between her mother and boyfriend, Shane which led to her birth. However, she finds out the truth about what led to her birth. Her mother was gang raped. Horrified, she returns to Reedstown, the town her mother grew up in, hoping to find clues about the tragic events. She soon realizes that a lot of townspeople are not pleased about her investigation and are determined to put an end to it.

I empathized with Adele throughout this story. To find out something so disturbing about yourself must be horrifying. To make matters worse, upon her return to Reedstown, her mother and grandmother are instantly vilified. When news breaks about her mother’s diary and what it contains, they instantly discredit its contents. I would have felt so alone and confused in that situation. However, what I admired most about Adele was her determination to find out the truth, no matter what it cost her.

The lengths the townspeople were willing to go to to ensure that the truth stayed buried was amazing. The fanaticism that existed long after the Thorns, a religious group founded within the town, was disbanded was fascinating to read about. No matter what, cults will continue to exist because there are weak minds everywhere.

When Adele found what she was looking for, I realized there was still a lot of the book to go. I started to get worried that the author was just gonna use a lot of unnecessary filler at the end. However, she was able to fit in even more surprises which led to a thrilling end.

The only wrong thing I noticed was a passage which was placed twice in the book. I suspect the second time may have been a typo and I hope that would have been corrected before the book is published. There were also some terms I did not understand but that was just because the events within the book happened in Ireland so a lot of Irish slang was used.

There were a lot of references to violence, both sexual and otherwise. The Mother and Baby Home also had some disturbing scenes. There was some minor profanity. This is a book for adults mainly. If you enjoy thrillers and mysteries, this book is definitely for you.
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Brilliant. A really emotional read. So many babies were taken from their unmarried mothers in Ireland. So many lies were told. This is a powerful book about this incredibly painful part of recent history. 

Thank you to Netgalley for my copy.
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This  book is a slow burner. However, once you get into it, it a powerful emotional rollercoaster. 

Adele is clearing out her Grandmothers attic following her death. Adele was raised by her following her mother’s death when she was born. Hidden in the eaves is a backpack containing her mother’s Journal. It details her conception. More traumatic is how she was taken to a mother and baby home in her Native Ireland. 

Adele then moves back to her mothers home village to discover what happened twenty five years ago. 

Lots of suspects and twists in a well written book.
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Thanks Netgalley and the Publisher.  What a powerful read this was.  and I can just imagine this sort of thing happening in Ireland.  Worthy 5 stars
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This book is one of my favorites of the year. I finished it in two days. I could not put this book down. This book has so many twists and turns. This book starts with Adele cleaning out Her grand mothers attic after he passing. While cleaning up she finds a backpack with a diary. This diary belonged to Marianne her mother who died during childbirth. She starts to read her mothers diary and finds out her mom was gang rapped which lead to her pregnancy with Adele. Adele starts her mission to find out who her father is and to bring justice to her mother. 

This book keeps you guessing and keeps you so hooked on the story. 
I now want to read all of Laura Elliots books. 

Stop whatever you are doing and pick up a copy of this book. You will not be disappointed.
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This was an interesting book , I love the start and I thought it had real promise but I nearly gave up in the middle of the book as it was obvious who the culprits were but I stuck with it and I was surprised it had quite a good ending . It wasn’t my favourite book of hers but it was still worth reading
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For me, this book was a little slow to get started but it soon picked up and I couldn't stop.  It tells the story of Adele in the present, whose grandmother has just passed away and who is now packing up the home they lived in when she comes across a backpack in the attic that belonged to her mother, Marianne, who died in childbirth.  As she reads it, she realizes she didn't know her grandmother like she thought and that there are too many secrets about what really happened to her mother.  While her fiance moves to the US for a new work project, she stays behind to visit her mother's hometown and see if she can discover the truth of what happened to her mother and who her father might be.

The story alternates between this timeline and that of Marianne in her diary passages.  Upon becoming pregnant, she was sent to a mother and baby home of some religious fanatics and she stayed there until she died.  Why she was sent there and how she became pregnant in the first place is apparently much disputed and Adele is working hard in the present to clear her mother's bad reputation.

The story involves the typical close-knit community covering up lies upon lies.  Politicians, police and the local well-known community leaders in this case.  Adele comes to town claiming her only interest is making a documentary about the religious cult that ran the mother and baby home, but it's clear she has ulterior motives and those who were involved do all that they can to prevent her in succeeding in unraveling the truth.  The reader will most likely realize who the culprits are early on, but it's more about finding out what was done than who did it.  There are a couple of good twists thrown in but towards the end the story got a little hard to believe, in my opinion.    I don't mind credibility being stretched, but you may find yourself being drawn out of the story and thinking, 'Oh come on, really?'

Anyway, I did find this to be a good page-turner with plenty of action and I kept wanting to find out if justice would be served in a way all of the scumbags in the story deserved.  I don't think you will be disappointed!
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Adele Foyle was raised by her grandmother and is horrified and heartbroken when she discovers her late mother’s diary.  At first devastated to read the awful story about the rape and death of her mother in one of Ireland’s notorious unwed mother institutions Adele is  then resolute in exposing the truth and holding everyone accountable.  This is brilliantly written, you feel as if you were in the rooms with her mother, stunned at the stonewalling of the hierarchy out to protect themselves at every turn.  How I loved Adele, strong, identifiable,  yet  vulnerable in her life-changing decision to avenge her mother’s death and expose the never ending deception and deceit.  A really, really wonderful book that I will be thinking about for quite a while.
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The start of In My Mothers Name is truly haunting, it gripped me straight away and is a brilliant beginning.
The rest of the story can be a little slow but with different points of view this is a slow but worthwhile story. Little pieces of the mystery are leaked and left me terrified at times. I did not like the last 25% of the story it could have been edited better since I lost interest once the main storyline was out of the way.
Small town mentality and the history of Magdalene Laundries is fantastically shown and there was a lot of moments that made me gasp!
Overall while I found faults in the story it’s definitely one worth reading!
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A powerful story 
A really powerful story
Marianne was raped, gang raped and sent to ‘A Mum and Baby Unit’ run by the pious Thorns sect ( cult ) based in Ireland 
Adele was born
Marianne died and Adele was brought up by her Nan, when her Nan dies Adele is going through papers and documents and comes across her Mum’s diary....she horrifyingly discovers the truth of what really happened to her Mum
And decides to go to the town it happened in
Reedstown has moved on
But have the rapists

And so starts a very moving story as Adele comes to terms with her Mum’s past and also has to fight for the truth to be told
It is going to cause murders, literally

I keep saying powerful but it really is a powerful book, I believed Adele, I was with her in her fight for justice and her deep sorrow and unexpected joy
The story is rich in descriptive narrative, the scene setting in Ireland and the use of our wonderful language is not off putting but enriching and I loved the way every sentence built a virtual picture
An emotional ending to a difficult subject matter that was handled superbly
A sterling read and one I wont forget
5 Stars
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This is a compelling and gripping read that I didn’t want to put down. I devoured this book in one sitting. Laura Elliott pulled me in from the very start. This book fully deserves five stars. I highly recommend.
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When Adele Foyle returns to Ireland to clear out her late grandmother's attic, she stumbles upon her mother, Marianne's secret diary which reveals the disturbing chain of events that led to Adele's birth. Adele is horrified to learn that her entire life has been a lie and makes the painful decision to travel to her mother's home town in the hopes of finding some answers to all the horrible secrets described in the diary. When she gets there, she is shocked by the hostility directed towards her and the lengths the villagers will go to to keep the past buried. In My Mother's Name is a gripping, well-plotted thriller that captivated me from the first page to the last. Told from multiple POVs, this story took me on an emotional roller coaster ride as I tried to piece together Marianne's heartbreaking story. Adele was a wonderful character, I admired her strength and her determination to get justice for her mother despite the numerous attempts from villagers to silence her. I rooted for Adele throughout the entire book and my desire to see Marianne finally get the justice she deserved kept me turning the pages way past my usual bedtime. I was so sure that I had correctly put the pieces of the puzzle together. But then the last 25% of the story left me completely shocked. Never once did I imagine the story would go in the direction that it did. It was a brilliant and satisfying ending. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys dark, twisty thrillers. Thank you to NetGalley and Bookouture for the opportunity to read this ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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This was a compelling, intriguing, moving, exhilarating, surprising and unputdownable read that I devoured in one sitting, staying awake until the early hours. I had too many questions that needed answers to put it down. This book held me hostage until the last page and it was worth every extra cup of coffee I needed the following day to get them.

When I started this book I wasn’t expecting so many different layers to the story. It was these layers that made it so addictive as this diary, loaded as it is with such heinous accusations, turns out to be just the beginning of a hotbed of decades of lies, corruption and conspiracies in Reedstown. As the layers unravelled truths are revealed and we visit some of the darkest corners of human depravity, but also witness acts of kindness, and the goodness in humanity. 

Though the story is told from multiple points of view, our main focus is on Adele Foyle and her late mother Marianne, who died giving birth to her. Adele was raised by her grandmother and it is only after her death that she finds her mother’s diary. She knows that inside could be the answers to the questions her grandmother refused to give her, but is also worried that she might be better off not knowing. Ultimately, she needs to know and learns the awful truth of her birth and all that her mother suffered. Her anger and need for justice takes over her life, leading her back to Reedstown instead of following her fiance to start their new life in Colorado. She knows she has an uphill battle ahead, but is unprepared for the ferocity of the opposition she faces and the lengths some will go to to silence her and keep the secrets of the past buried. Adele was a well-written character. She is resolute, strong, and steadfast, her rage assailing her. But she is also broken, scared and lost, a young woman grieving the mother that was taken from her and everything she believed to be true that has been shattered. I was rooting for her every step of the way and it was this connection and need to see her get to the truth that kept me turning the pages well into the night. 

Entries from the diary give a voice to Marianne and enable her to be an integral character in the story. We see who she was and learn her innermost thoughts at the most difficult time in her young life. Just fifteen years old, pregnant after rape, torn away from her home and put in the Atonement Home that she calls a prison. Each entry is both heartbreaking and infuriating as she is repeatedly failed by those around her. The decision to make Marianne real through these entries, rather than just a shadow of the past, helped me connect to both her and Adele in her quest for justice. The author wrote characters who got under my skin and I too wanted justice for Marianne and the truth for Adele. 

In My Mother’s Name is an addictive and emotionally charged thriller that had me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. This was my first read by this author but it won’t be my last. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading mystery and thrillers.

Thank you to Bookoture and NetGalley for the chance to read and review this novel.
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A good read, a well developed story line with interesting characters, I thoroughly enjoyed it and can recommend.

Thank you to Netgalley and Bookouture for giving me the opportunity to read this book.
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Adele never met her mother, she was born and raised by a religious group run by Gloria Thornton. Marianne was last seen alive in the town of Reedstown and now with her mother’s diary in hand, Adele journeys there to find out what happened to her mother and see that those responsible are punished. And while those around Adele insist her mother’s diary is a work of fiction, Adele doesn’t believe it. Someone is trying very hard to keep the past buried.
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