This book is a mystery/thriller that takes us deep inside the minds of the members of a dysfunctional family. We meet Penny, who has spent the last year recovering from a breakdown, following the collapse of her marriage. She has spent eighteen months in a recovery centre learning to deal with her own problems and learning to let go of her innate desire to get involved in other people's lives. In the centre she met Robert, a man who has six month's to live, who has asked er to help him locate his estranged step-daughter Sophie, before he dies, so he can apologise to her. Penny is madly in love with Robert and readily agrees to help him out in his quest. From there the twisted, messy tale begins to unfold and lives unravel.
It took me a little time to actually get into this story. I had trouble initially grasping just who was who and what their place in the story was. Once I got my head around the characters though, I was off and running and following the story, which rollicked along at a frantic pace.
This is not the first Febry book I have read and I am already a fan of her style and her particularly British way of writing. It is something I enjoy and Elephant in the Room was exactly that - a very British action/thriller. Through the characters, the author does an exceptionally good job of raising issues that face us all in life and discussing how they should be dealt with. We see love, loss, disappointment, betrayal, fear, friendship and others all put out there and considered and dealt with. A good story will always make you identify with the characters and empathise with them. I was particularly drawn to the main character, Penny, in this tale. She had gone through personal "hell" herself and yet was still willing and determined enough to get involved with what would prove to ultimately be an extremely dysfunctional family. Penny had a way of getting under your skin and not letting you go. She described herself at one point as being like a terrier with a bone and that's a pretty apt description.
This is a well-written and very enjoyable story that is worth a look, especially if you are a fan, like me, of British action/thrillers Well done to the author for a good job and a solid four stars from me.