Sunday, October 11, 2009
TSS - Review - A Circle of Souls
A Circle of Souls by Preetham Grandhi
Synopsis from publisher:
The sleepy town of Newbury, Connecticut, is shocked when a little girl is found brutally murdered. With the murderer on the loose, the police desperately look for any clues to lead to his identy. Meanwhile, a psychiatrist in a nearby hospital is also in a desperate search to find the cause of seven-year-old Naya Hastings' devastating nightmares. Afraid that she might hurt herself in the midst of a torturous episode, Naya's parents have turned to the bright young doctor as their only hope. When these two situations converge, they set off an alarming chain of events. In this stunning psychological thriller, innocence gives way to evil, and trust lies forgotten in a web of deceit, fear, and murder.
This was a fairly entertaining debut novel. I was in the mood for a good suspense novel, and this book really hit the spot. It didn't immediately grab me - I think because the first few chapters jump fairly rapidly from one perspective to another - but I was interested enough in the premise to keep reading. Before long, I found myself immersed in the story, and found the remainder of the novel to be a very quick read.
The author is a child psychiatrist himself, and his knowledge of the inner workings of the children's psychiatric unit of a hospital was apparent. The scenes with Dr. Gram and Naya in the hospital were especially poignant, and it is apparent that the author cares deeply for the children he treats. He gives readers some very interesting insights into the medical and psychiatric professions, and explains medical policies and procedures in a way that the average reader can understand. Personally, I could completely understand and sympathize with Dr. Gram's irritation and frustration with insurance companies, and found myself chuckling several times as he described that ordeal - I have been there!
If the novel has a weakness, it would be in a lack of character development. His two main characters, Peter Gram and Leia Bines, could have a lot of depth, and I don't think they were fully fleshed out in all the ways they could be. However, I can see the potential for a series with these characters, and think they would definitely be protagonists I would be interested in reading lots of stories about.
In general, I enjoyed this novel. It kept me entertained on a rainy afternoon, and I would like to see a second novel by this author.
Source: the author - thank you!