The Marsh King’s Daughter

Title: The Marsh King’s Daughter

Author: Karen Dionne

Genres: Mystery | Thriller

Length: 320 pages | 3194 Kindle locations

Source: Edelweiss

Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons

Publishing Date: June 13th, 2017

Rating: 4.25/5


Helena grew up in the marsh, not knowing that her father had abducted her mother.
She has managed to make a life for her in the outside world but now her father has escaped prison. She is the only one who truly knows what he is capable of and hence the only one who can stop him. But at what cost?


Blimey, this was not an easy book! It is extremely psychologically charged and even though I had to suspend disbelief a couple of times, like when Helena mentions she taught herself to read when she was 3 or when she knows how to count out of the blue – and I definitely don’t understand how Stephen could be married to her and not want to know where all the stuff that must have been clearly wrong with his wife came from, the fact is the author managed an amazing balance between making this character interesting while not imbuing her with knowledge she was not supposed to have acquired due to her isolation.

The book starts with an account of a normal day in Helena’s life. She has her jam and jelly home business, a loyal dog and most importantly a beautiful family. Who don’t have the slightest idea of her past. All that is jeopardised when her father breaks out of jail because she knows he will be coming for her.

The narrative is interspersed with snippets of Hans Christian Andersen’s tale and I loved how it related to Helena’s own story. In her account she goes back and forward between her time growing up and her current predicament. The pace succeeds at keeping the reader interested in knowing what comes next on both timelines, especially since Helena makes sure to include both her views as her child and as an emancipated adult.

For me, the novel brings the whole unlikeable character think to a whole new level. I tried to sympathise with Helena but it was not easy to read all the awful things she thought, particularly of her mother, even as an adult. Sometimes she said she understood her actions while others it seemed clear she didn’t. However, this came around more nicely towards the end so I came to terms with her. Overall I find this an extremely well developed character and there was so much that could have gone wrong.

Still, at times Helena sounded so conceited and I especially did not get why she would underestimate her father, like she really expected to best him, just because she won a game – whose rules her father had made. This lack of humility is present throughout the narrative and it was difficult to accept. However, even the things I did not like made sense and she is after all her father’s daughter.

I highly recommend this book but be prepared for some heavy stuff.

Disclaimer: I would like to thank the publisher and Edelweiss for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Read from Apr 29th to May 1st, 2017
GR Review

April 2017 Wrap-Up

April was an amazing month! Things were so crazy busy at work that I was afraid I would not get much reading time, but I managed to make books my refuge, dive right in and get lost in them – and in the process, keeping my sanity.

I continued challenging myself to read new genres/stuff I would not normally read, and began the month with a non-fiction book, followed by a YA book that I won in a giveaway.

I have been playing with my Instagram account and, though I still have a lot to learn, I am quite happy with the experience. There are some proper talented people out there, let me tell ya. The pictures I come across are quite inspirational.

My usually dormant artistic bug bit me during a trip to Tiger and I bought watercolour crayons and paper, having created my very own bookmark. It is incredibly amateurish but hey it’s mine, and the process was actually quite relaxing, so even if I don’t stick to it I am happy that I tried.

There were a few lovely sunny days and I feel overall quite content so cheers to April, thanks for bringing me joy!


Total Books Read: 8

Longest Read: Gambit (556 pages)

Shortest Read: Virginia (57 pages)

Book of the Month: All the Good Things

Favourite Cover:

Challenges Progress:

GoodReads: 33/52

British Books Challenge: 19/12

2017 Netgalley & Edelweiss: 28/35

April Books:


My first book of the month was Lady Killers: A Compendium, by Tori Telfer.

I requested this as part of my new year challenge to read new genres. I enjoyed it but I think I would have been more invested had the cases portrayed in the book been more contemporary. Instead, they took a tone of myth and my thirst for understanding wicked minds was not quenched.

I rated it 2.5/5 stars.


Gambit (The Prodigy Chronicles #1) by C.L. Denault was an extremely fast-paced read.

I had quite a few issues with the book as I yearned for less clichés and more character and world development but it was still enjoyable.

I rated it 3/5 stars.


All the Good Things, by Clare Fisher was amazing. It is a harrowing book and I had to put it down on a couple of occasions because to be frank it was bringing me down but it is also very beautiful and has the most perfect ending.

If you can handle tough reads I highly recommend this.

I rated it 4.5/5 stars.


The Lost Children (Detective Lucy Harwin #1) by Helen Phifer was an ok beginning to a crime series.

There are just so many out there better done that I didn’t enjoy it much. I couldn’t take to the main character, for one. And there wasn’t enough of the premise of the children in the asylum, which was what pulled me in. Some things were quite predictable and I just don’t think I will be following this series.

I rated it 2.5/5 stars.


Just when you think you have read pretty much everything you could about twisted female characters, The Girlfriend, by Michelle Frances brings things to a whole new level.

Mother and girlfriend face off in desperate attempts to keep the other out of Daniel’s life. And they are willing to do some pretty desperate things, for sure. This book is extremely rich in terms of character development and, although there were a couple of things here and there I didn’t much like, I do recommend it.

I rated it 4.25/5 stars.


Virginia by William Esmont was a quick, enjoyable read.

Although there were a few situations where I wished the main character had acted differently and some parts dragged on, I think this novella has a pretty good balance between keeping the author interested while not giving too much away and it ended up being a creepy, interesting read.

I rated it 3.5/5 stars.


Well, we can’t love every single book, right? It has been a while since I read one I enjoyed so little.

The Abscission Zone, by Samuel Muggington was an extremely bumpy ride where we get to follow a couple of characters who annoyed the heck out of me.

I doubt I will be reading anything else by this author.

I rated it 1.5/5 stars.


The Ridge by John Rector was a Stepfordwife-type of novel that got quite creepy and enjoyable at times. However, I could not much get several of the main character’s actions and I finished the book with many unanswered questions.

It is a book to appreciate for the journey.

I rated it 3.25/5 stars.


Where I got the books:


  • Lady Killers



  • Gambit



  • All the Good Things
  • The Lost Children
  • The Girlfriend
  • Virginia
  • The Abscission Zone
  • The Ridge


Movie Reviews:






Other Posts in April:


How was April for you?
Do you have a Wrap-up post? Please link it below!