A small book which has the power to shatter your world.
For everything I expected from Melinda Salisbury's Hold Back The Tide I was rewarded with something outstandingly better than I could have imagined.
Based in olden day rural Scotland, Hold Back The Tide tempts you in with what sounds to be an intriguing plot in and of itself and then, with every turning page, complicates and grows until you hardly recognise the blurb to the story itself. The breathtaking, gorgeous twists of this novel are complimented by real, wonderful, characters who you swiftly grow attachments to and who soon become as real to you as family.
As Melinda Salisbury spins her glistening web she also provides you a glimpse into a world long lost to time. A way of life that she has evidently well researched and speaks of a magic many of us long for in today's modern age. Tapping into our desires of myth, community, and rural beauty, Salisbury pulls us into a place were things make sense, only to lock the door and reveal, with a burst of sudden shocking light, a secret underbelly we could hardly have imagined.
Starting off on a dark note the books anticipation and fear factor grows in kind of the Jaws theme tune, our need to read the next chapter, to get to the next page, to step into the next paragraph intensifying until we're running through the book, desperate to get to the other side, too hooked to consider putting it down or stepping away, too afraid to go even one hour without knowing what happens next.
Based in Ormscaula, the book focuses on main character Alva Douglas, a girl who's mother met a tragic end many years ago. All the citizens of Ormscaula know what happened to her mother, yet none talk of it. Alva Douglas lives on a knifes edge, skirting around the desires of the murderer sharing her roof, a roof she cannot wait to escape. However, when things start to change in the mountains of Ormscaula Alva must face a very different future to the one she has spent her time dreaming and working towards, questioning everything she thought she knew about her past.
A short read that many will finish in a day, yet a story which will linger for much longer. Hold Back The Tide is a book that will leave you breathless, aching for more, and incredibly impressed with the talents of Melinda Salisbury. All the while questioning whether or not it is wise to holiday in rural Scotland after all.
We give Hold Back The Tide five stars.
ISBN - 978-1-407180-29-8 Cover Price - £7.99