The Memories We Bury by H. A. Leuschel is a character-driven thriller, focusing on a woman’s obsession with having grandchildren.
Thank you to Emma of Damppebbles Book Tours for sending me a free copy of The Memories We Bury in return for an honest review.
In The Memories We Bury, Lizzie Thomson has recently moved into her new home in Edinburgh with her husband Markus. Shortly after, Lizzie becomes pregnant unexpectedly with their first child, Jamie. She befriends their neighbour, Morag, a knowledgeable widow who longs for grandchildren. When Morag finds out that Lizzie is pregnant, she is thrilled for her. Markus becomes increasingly distant, forcing Lizzie to rely more and more on Morag, who takes on a grandmotherly role in Jamie’s life.
The Memories We Bury was released on 29th July and is available on Amazon in eBook and paperback. You can also read it for free through your Kindle Unlimited subscription.
Each chapter throughout the book switches between Lizzie and Morag’s point of view. The timeline also switches, beginning with 2016, then flashing back to 2013-2014 and the history of what’s happened. Both characters were fascinating — they are both so different.
Lizzie is quiet and introverted, a music teacher. Her relationship with her husband Markus is strained — he felt it was too soon for them to have children and he’s focused on his career. It’s easy to see why Lizzie feels isolated, and begins to rely on her neighbour. I enjoyed reading her sections; I could feel her loneliness and suffocation coming off the page.
Morag has always been well-groomed and organised — the image of the ideal housewife. As a retired pediatric nurse, she is also knowledgeable, which Lizzie is incredibly grateful for. A widow, she is also lonely and isolated. She’s desperate for a grandchild and is overjoyed to help with Jamie’s care.
By reading the story from each point of view (often each day from their individual viewpoints), we learn more about their motivations and history. It became difficult to figure out who was telling the truth and who to believe as the story progressed. I went back and re-read the first few chapters after finishing the book, seeing them with fresh eyes.
While this is character-driven, the story had me hooked. It starts off quite slow and innocent, then slowly begins to ramp up. I felt for Lizzie and was so anxious for Jamie! I didn’t want to put this one down as I kept thinking about the characters and what was going to happen next. The last half of the book is really tense!
The Memories We Bury is a fantastic, thrilling read, that’s well-written with brilliantly crafted characters. I could believe that this was a true story and felt totally immersed in their world. The whole book is so tense and I was gripped to the very end! I think this book would particularly appeal to young mothers who may be able to relate to Lizzie — but as a non-mother, it was a fantastic read. I look forward to reading more from this author in future!
The blurb for The Memories We Bury
An emotionally charged and captivating novel about the complexities of female friendship and motherhood.
Lizzie Thomson has landed her first job as a music teacher, and after a whirlwind romance with Markus, the newlywed couple move into a beautiful new home in the outskirts of Edinburgh. Lizzie quickly befriends their neighbour Morag, an elderly, resourceful yet lonely widow, whose own children rarely visit her. Everything seems perfect in Lizzie’s life until she finds out she is pregnant and her relationship with both Morag and Markus change beyond her control.
Can Lizzie really trust Morag and why is Markus keeping secrets from her?
In The Memories We Bury the author explores the dangerous bonds we can create with strangers and how past memories can cast long shadows over the present.
About the author, H.A. Leuschel
Helene Andrea Leuschel gained a Master in Journalism & Communication, which led to a career in radio and television in Brussels, London and Edinburgh. She later acquired a Master in Philosophy, specialising in the study of the mind. Helene has a particular interest in emotional, psychological and social well-being and this led her to write her first novel, Manipulated Lives, a fictional collection of five novellas, each highlighting the dangers of interacting with narcissists. She lives with her husband and two children in Portugal.
The Memories We Bury is available on Amazon in eBook and paperback. You can also read it for free through your Kindle Unlimited subscription.