Have you been searching for a story that is unsettling yet too gripping to put down since Gone Girl? Us too. Tina Seskis’ debut, originally published independently as an e-book in the UK, is what you’re looking for.
5 reasons to read:
1. Emily abandons her life in Manchester, England in the face of a horrific secret and becomes Cat, a London ad exec with a penchant for cocaine, champagne, and shop-lifting–Hello, London!
2. Sounds melodramatic, you say? Seskis is skilled at rooting the story in the very real struggles of family life, jealousy, betrayal, and grief with characters to support a drama-filled plot.
3. Seskis delves into the lives of Emily/Cat, her twin sister Caroline, her parents Frances and Andrew, and Ben, the brokenhearted husband Emily leaves behind–recounting pivotal moments that propel the story.
4. We won’t give it away, but there is a heart-wrenching twist even we predicted wrong (and that’s saying a lot).
5. Seskis’ ability to zoom in on details and properly pull back when needed comes through to bring together a wonderfully unnerving story.
The Long View:
Organized into four parts, One Step Too Far is about the favored twin, the wanted twin–Emily–and the happiness that is later ripped from her. Emily and Caroline’s mother Frances thought she was having one baby girl and when, during labor, the doctors informed her there was another baby in there–well, she was quite traumatized. Not to mention the fact that her husband, Andrew, was not there–off instead with his secretary. Caroline grows up hating her mother, hating her twin, and hurting herself through anorexia and substance abuse. Emily, on the other hand, becomes a lawyer and meets her future husband, Ben, on a parachuting trip. In the end, however, Caroline will have a hand in ravaging her twin’s life forever. The story alternates between these moments of motivation for the characters–the first meeting of Ben and Emily, their wedding, Andrew’s indiscretions, Caroline’s reconciliation with Frances–and Emily’s life as Cat, living with her friend Angel, working at an advertising agency, and cultivating vices Emily didn’t know she had. When the one-year anniversary of Emily’s escape arrives, the full weight of all that Emily has lost comes crashing through into Cat’s new life. In the wake of this day, Cat lets her guard down and another tragedy brings part of her secret out into the open. Only when her two lives converge will the truth come out and some solace with it.
Order One Step Too Far: A Novel