51248269._sy475_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, who’s 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.

Source Format Pages Publisher Genre Publication Date
Author eARC 327 EKT Selection Ltd Women’s Fiction April 17th, 2020

Oh my… well, to give it to you short? A whole lot of uncomfortable and disturbing going on here… For the duration of the book (until the truth as such, that is), I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop. Emotionally charged and draining, it was impossible to tell who the unstable person was and who the victim. And such is real life too- we often see and accept the person by what appears on the surface, unwilling to believe anything malicious of them. Well, sometimes still waters run deep and utterly dangerous.

The Memories We Bury is yet another title by Leuschel that could be a psychological case study (see also Manipulated Lives and My Sweet Friend) but far from being an academic read, the scenario is truly relatable from all the angles.

So, what is the scenario? We have a young woman Lizzie at the start of motherhood, navigating unknown waters and emotions. We have a rather lonesome elderly lady Morag, the perfect source of nurture and care, happy to help steer the start of new lives. Neighbors. Each the perfect soothing balm for the other’s gaping need.

At a first glance, quite the perfect outcome, right?… but… are people really what they seem? Who is using who?

Again, like in the previous titles, the author makes good work tricking the reader off the scent on really knowing who to trust. I couldn’t help but think the whole time how true to life this book is – you really can’t tell anyone’s ulterior motives; you really can’t tell how far someone is willing to cross the line for their own selfish reasons. And, it’s scary! You can trust and give people a chance. Or, you can be a hermit for the rest of your life, never trusting, always seeing the wolf. But, it’s also never that black and white when it comes to making this decision to trust, or not trust, someone. There is always the aspect of who the person is themselves that will wager in on the decision – how they grew up, how their environment has shaped them, what they believe in and what their moral compass looks like.

This book ultimately reminded me that with every interaction and transaction, there can always be multiple outcomes. Yes, it all boils down to one small decision made but the decision to let someone into our lives can either be the gateway to a happy life that we all yearn for, or the step into the ninth circle of hell. Who can tell? Who can ever tell?

Anyway, Leuschel did a wonderful job hitting the notes from all characters’ perspectives. You can feel for one and the other because their background is thoroughly bared for you and your soul aches a bit because you can relate. No matter how little or how much, you will be able to relate on some level. And, in the end, when you have felt the tug of sympathy for everyone involved, it will be all the worse having to learn the truth. It makes you sick a little because it’s something that can easily happen… Humans.. We’re such creatures, us!

All three titles by the author have hit the mark with me. I have enjoyed the psychological aspect – the detailed and interesting case studies wrapped in fictional, the realistic portrayal of various mental states and the feeling of ‘Beware’ that I am always left with! 🙂