By Megan Tayte
Scarlett Blake has returned for the summer to where she lost everything, the scene of the unspeakable loss of the dearest person in the world to her - her sister Sienna, who was 10 months older than her.
Twycombe is a coastal town where the Blake family has a cottage on the Devonshire Cliffs overlooking the ocean where Scarlett is determined to uncover what drove her dear sister out into the ocean that night to take her own life. If only she could understand where Sienna's head was at then maybe she could finally be at peace with the loss…maybe. And of course there’s that thought in the back of her mind that perhaps she didn’t take her life at all. She can’t quell the ache that she had lost the knowledge of who her sister was and the life she was living. So coming to Twycombe is the only thing left to do.
Sienna ran away from boarding school three months prior to her death and had made the Blake cottage and Twycombe her home. New friends, new activities. And now Scarlett, hesitantly, must discreetly follow those footsteps and try herself to develop some sense of a life there as well.
Scarlett sets out to learn to surf, a way to slither in to the surf crowd in hopes of learning more about Sienna. She attends parties and other events in an effort to find answers. And what she didn’t expect was along the way Scarlett's makes some of her own invaluable friendships, including a love interest. But can she focus on what's going on in her own life or is she so obsessed with Sienna's life that she loses sight of what's right in front of her?
Tayte does a beautiful job with the imagery. "...that serene, beautiful landscape where butterflies bobbed and grass tickled and the ocean was a velvet blanket that rippled peacefully." Death Wish is impeccably edited. The only thing I need to point out for readers in the U.S is that may be unfamiliar with the way some things are written in the U.K so there is no confusion: with the dialogue as our writer is in the U.K one apostrophe is used as opposed to two for direct quotes and two apostrophes are used for a quote within a quote. It isn’t hard to catch on to once you start reading. The book is good enough that you’ll hardly notice!
I have to say that I was most impressed with the level of intimacy that Tayte created in Death Wish between the characters with absolutely no sex. I felt the emotional and intimate connection without being bombarded with sexual situations. In a society where sex sells, I found this extremely refreshing.
In summation I will say I was more than pleased with this book and it left me wanting more - which from what I see there are other books to follow. I must warn that Death Wish ended in a cliff hanger so I'm biting my nails for the next one.