Review: The Memory by Lucy Dawson

The MemoryMany years ago something happened to my daughter Isobel, something that broke her from the inside. Our family fell apart that day, and we never could pick up the pieces…

When tragedy strikes, single mother Eve retreats with her daughter Isobel to Fox Cottage, their isolated home on the outskirts of town. Izzie, seven years old and sensitive, needs time to heal away from prying eyes.

Days become years and the town moves on, but Eve won’t let go and Isobel can’t grow up. When a new family comes to Fox Cottage, their presence in the house will unearth a dark past that has long been buried… that somebody close to them would do anything to hide. It will expose secrets that Eve never knew about her own daughter – that she can scarcely believe could be true…


Lucy Dawson is an author whose books I have always enjoyed. The Memory turned out to be different from anything that I have read by her. The story mainly revolves around Isobel and her mom, Eve and Timothy and his wife, Claire.

This was an atmospheric read with an interesting setting.  Fox Cottage, where most of the story is set, is a huge, old house. I still can’t tell you exactly how many rooms it had. The house is kinda falling apart with musty, old carpets, a door that sticks. I can tell it had a smell even if the author didn’t out rightly say so. This house had such a creepy vibe to it that added to the tension in the narrative. At the same time, there was something charming about it.

The Memory is a slow burn thriller. The suspense took time to build though it did lead to an explosive ending. There were mysteries that held my attention especially surrounding Izzie. Some of the events had my scratching my head wondering whether there was something supernatural going on. Another thing that I loved was the descriptive writing. I feel like I can recognize Isobel if I ever met her. I can imagine her child-like voice and the long hair. The author also gave the old house a personality. It was so vividly described that I can still picture some of the rooms. The descriptive writing wasn’t just in the main things but other smaller details such as Adam’s Van. I always appreciate writing that everything come alive like that.

Although I loved the writing and especially the descriptiveness, the pace and parts of the dialogue did bother me a bit and I found myself frequently checking how many pages were left on my kindle.  In the end, I liked this story but I didn’t love it like I thought I would.


  1. I too didn’t like it much. I started with it… And dozed off while reading… So I kept it aside.. Sighhh have to get to it.. I wish it went faster and I found it very confusing too in the beginning and weird…
    Thanks to your review I will get to it soon

    1. Sorry to hear about your experience, Shalini. I hope that your second attempt will be better. The mystery and setting are great though the pacing and some of dialogue didn’t work for me. I hope that something will click for you though 🙂

    1. I hope that you’ll enjoy this one if you decide to read it.This isn’t my favourite book by Dawson but I’m still in awe of her writing.In this book,it was super descriptive and helped in creating a great atmosphere for the mystery.

    1. Thank you Jennifer. I have read 2 books since and they were definitely LOVES 🙂 I tend to struggle with the pacing in slow burn thrillers and I guess I was expecting something different which is partly why this one didn’t work out well for me.

    1. Thanks Norrie. The house really stood out in more than one way. I think that is the part of the story that will stay with me the longest 🙂

  2. I haven’t read any books by Lucy Dawson for a while, the last book I read by her was You Sent Me A Letter. Great review, Diana, I’m glad that you enjoyed the book in the end.

    1. Thanks Jacob. I haven’t read You Sent Me a Letter. Did you enjoy it? My favorites by her are White Lies and The Daughter.

      Yeah, I certainly enjoyed parts of this one and the ending was memorable 🙂

  3. Wonderful review and you are so right about the house being its own character such descriptive writing!

    1. Thanks Inge. The pace was a bit too slow for my liking but I think lovers of slow burn thrillers will enjoy this one more than I did. The mystery and setting were excellent though.

  4. When I read a thriller I want to be on the edge of my seat. If not, then I tend to lose momentum with the story. Too bad this one bogged down somewhat. A slow burn is good, but it has to have a steady pace. Great review Diana.

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