They say you know instinctively who to trust.
Alice is normal; she'd never do anything rash. But when she sees her husband one day with a younger girl, she knows at once that he's having an affair. And it must be stopped.
Vic loves her friend Michael, more than he knows. He wants happiness and thinks he's found it with the magnetic Estella. But Vic feels she can't be trusted - and she needs to make Michael see that too.
They don't know Kaya; her life is tougher than they can imagine. But Kaya's a survivor, and she's determined to find a way out of her miserable world.
Three women, three lives that come crashing together in this dark, lyrical and utterly enthralling story of warped perceptions, female intuition and 'the other woman'.
I was always told not to judge a book by its cover, but I have to admit, that there was something that drew me to Strange Girls and Ordinary Women by Morgan McCarthy*. From it's unique title, to the mysterious and forlorn woman on the front of the book in a popping yellow dress, this book demands attention, and it certainly didn't disappoint.
It is the story of three separate, and entirely different women, Alice, Vic and Kaya, who, as the book progresses, their paths become increasingly linked with one another in the most unexpected of ways.
Alice is the wife of a thoroughly dastardly doctor, Jasper, who she quickly realises is having an affair. At first, she is undoubtedly an ordinary women, keeping a warm home, cooking whole salmons and doting on her husband. When she cottons on to the philandering ways of her husband however, she quickly demonstrates some spying skills that the most discreet of private detectives would be proud of. Perhaps not quite an ordinary woman as originally thought.
Vic is the manager of a hotel in sunny Madeira, helplessly in love with her friend Michael, and increasingly bitter of his growing relationship with the captivating and mysterious Estella. Kaya, is the exotic and alluring club dancer, who's hardships in life are in stark contrast to the comforts and normality that Alice and Vic enjoy.
At first, the book feels slightly disjointed as the author introduces the three different women in three separate narratives. But as their paths become entwined, you become more and more drawn into the book, leading to a quiet, but poignant conclusion.
Strange Girls and Ordinary Women is a story of real life. There aren't huge explosions, sweeping romantic statements or of heroines being swept off their feet, but of the realities of life and of its varied personalities, in very different circumstances. It is a gripping, and powerfully written book, and one that will make you feel rather sad when you finish. A thoroughly enjoyable book (even if you want to shake Vic up and down for being such a wet blanket at times).
Strange Girls and Ordinary Women by Morgan McCarthy - link