Review – The Au Pair by Emma Rous

 

About the Book:

Seraphine Mayes and her twin brother Danny were born in the middle of summer at their family’s estate on the Norfolk coast. Within hours of their birth, their mother threw herself from the cliffs, the au pair fled, and the village thrilled with whispers of dark cloaks, changelings, and the aloof couple who drew a young nanny into their inner circle.

Now an adult, Seraphine mourns the recent death of her father. While going through his belongings, she uncovers a family photograph that raises dangerous questions. It was taken on the day the twins were born, and in the photo, their mother, surrounded by her husband and her young son, is beautifully dressed, smiling serenely, and holding just one baby.

Who is the child and what really happened that day?

One person knows the truth, if only Seraphine can find her.

Click on title below for direct Amazon buy link:                                                      The Au Pair

My Review:

I received a complimentary copy of this book.

THE AU PAIR is a captivating and enthralling mystery which is told from alternating viewpoints, that of Laura Silveira and Seraphine Mayes, and unfolds over two decades.

Laura is just eighteen years old when she comes to Summerbourne to work for the Mayes family as au pair to their young son, Edwin.  Laura is fond of her charge, and her employers are kind and generous, making for an ideal situation.  When Mrs. Mayes (Ruth) becomes pregnant, her husband (Dominic) is overjoyed.  So why, on the very day that Ruth gives birth, would Laura flee this ideal position?

Seraphine (Seph) and her twin brother, Danny, were the babies born to Ruth on the day Laura fled Summerbourne over twenty years ago.  The Mayes family has been dealt tragedy after tragedy.  Ruth committed suicide the very day the twins were born, and now Dominic has died.  Seph has never resembled her brothers, and has felt somewhat of an outsider.  After Dominic’s death, she finds a picture of her mother, taken on the day of her birth, but holding only one baby, and looking very happy, not like a woman about to end her own life.

Why is there only one baby in the picture?  Why would a woman looking so happy take her own life hours later?  Seph decides she needs to track down the au pair, Laura, to find out what light she can shed on these mysteries.  Laura doesn’t want to be found, however, leaving Seph more confused than ever.

Rumors have swirled about the Mayes family, and innuendos hint at something not quite as it should be regarding the twins’ birth.  The story as told from Laura’s point of view in the past, and Seph’s search for answers in the present makes for a page turner that was hard to put down.  Murder, lies, infidelity, and deception all play a role in the mystery, which will truly shake up the world of so many, as long held secrets are revealed.  I found THE AU PAIR to be a fascinating and compelling read, which I believe will please readers who love a good, twisty suspense novel.    ~Rose

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