A Game for All the Family by Sophie Hannah
Justine thought she knew who she was, until an anonymous caller seemed to know better…
After fleeing London and a career that nearly destroyed her, Justine Merrison plans to spend her days doing as little as possible. But soon after the move, her daughter Ellen starts to seem strangely withdrawn. Checking Ellen’s homework one day, Justine finds herself reading a chillingly articulate story about a series of sinister murders committed at the family’s new house. Can Ellen really have made all this up, as she claims? Why would she invent something so grotesque, set it in her own home and name one of the characters after herself? When Justine discovers that Ellen has probably also invented her best friend at school, who appears not to be known to any of the teachers, Justine’s alarm turns to panic.
Then the anonymous phone calls start: a stranger, making accusations and threats that suggest she and Justine share a traumatic past – yet Justine doesn’t recognise her voice. When the caller starts to talk about three graves – two big ones and a smaller one for a child – Justine fears for her family’s safety. If the police can’t help, she’ll have to confront the danger herself, but first she must work out who she’s supposed to be…
Justine Merrison is leaving her current job to move to the country with her family. But this is not going to be the quiet home she was planning. She starts receiving disturbing phone calls from someone that has a lot of information on her but she knows nothing about. Then Ellen starts acting strangely. Ellen comes up with a strange story for a school assignment. The family is odd that get odder and odder as we hear about them and eventually lead to murder. Ellen has also become obsessed with George, a boy that the school insists doesn’t exist. Justine will need to get to the bottom of all of this quickly.
This story is told in two parts that alternate between what is happening with Justine and her family and Ellen’s story. Although there is a lot happening, that seems to more confuse the reader than actually progress the story. I will admit that I was curious about what was really happening. But I’m sorry to say that I was really disappointed in the ending.
Over all this is not a horrible story. I think with a different ending it would have been a better book. It is definitely one to try, I could see this being one of those books that you either really like or really hate.
I received A Game for All the Family for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.