Broken Branches is a story which had me intrigued from the fantastic cover set in black and moody grey tones of a tree sat on what appears to be a hill, with a red door in the tree. The book had that mysterious feel to it and one I would instantly pick up for closer inspection in a book shop etc.
On opening the book, the first few chapters had me wondering what this book was going to be about. We are given insights into the main character Ian. Chapters of him now married with a child, along with chapters of a younger Ian, his brother and their parents. The present day Ian is looking into his family tree and he has become seriously obsessed with this to the point, that with his every waking moment he spends time locked in his study trying to work out the family tree and “the curse” that he has heard so much about, withdrawing from his day job and neglecting his family. You are given vivid descriptions of how much time and effort he has been putting into finding out as much as he can about this family tree, and these descriptions had me imaging myself sat in the study with him frantically working through each piece searching for that missing link!
I found myself drawn into this book, however, at time was not entirely sure where the story was going, but was a book that had me intrigued but not riveted. I was interested in trying to figure this out (as I do with any book I read) and found myself reading more and more of this whenever I got a chance and this was one of the quickest books I have read in the last month.
I felt that the book jumped around too much with various timelines and as the alternating chapters / timelines progressed was more and more puzzled where the book was going. I wasn’t sure if it was a ghost story or a psychological thriller. The author, however, has a great writing style and it was this that had me picking up the book to read more as well as wanting to know how the book was going to pan out.
The conclusion of the book had me questioning how the author had found writing this book, however after reading an Q&A session on another book blog, found out the reasons behind this and now can fully understand and appreciate why it was written the way it was, and made me understand and appreciate the book more.
My thanks go to M. Jonathan Lee and also to the publishers Hideaway Falls for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book. I look forward to seeing what Hideaway Falls have up their sleeves next.