Book reviews

The Change by Kirsten Miller

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This book is one that feels as though it could have been written for me at this point in my life where I am starting to question my worth. For some reason media has made it so that women apparently have three stages in their lives, they are the ingenue, the mother and the crone/grandmother. There is no happy medium, no point in their lives where they just are. But in The Change by Kirsten Miller that is exactly what we are presented with. Could it be seen as a man-hating feminist tract? Possibly. But I just felt it was meant to give us a feeling of worth.

The change is coming….       

Nessa: the Seeker 

Jo: the Protector 

Harriett: the Punisher 

With newfound powers, the time has come to take matters into their own hands….

After Nessa is widowed and her daughters leave for college, she’s left alone in her house near the ocean. In the quiet hours, she hears voices belonging to the dead—who will only speak to her.

On the cusp of 50, Harriett’s marriage and career imploded, and she hasn’t left her house in months. But her life is far from over—in fact, she’s undergone a stunning metamorphosis.

Jo spent 30 years at war with her body. The rage that arrived with menopause felt like the last straw—until she discovers she’s able to channel it.

Guided by voices only Nessa can hear, the trio discover the abandoned body of a teenage girl. The police have written off the victim. But the women have not. Their own investigations lead them to more bodies and a world of wealth where the rules don’t apply—and the realisation that laws are designed to protect villains, not the vulnerable.

So it’s up to these three women to avenge the innocent, and punish the guilty….

The time has come to embrace The Change.

Where do I start? Three incredibly strong female characters with a strong woman in waiting in the form of Lucy, the daughter of Jo, one of our loudest voices.

I wasn’t sure what I was going to get when I started reading this book, but being a woman of a certain age I was so happy to read about women my age and older who had found strength and purpose AFTER they were considered over the hill when on the path they had taken.

We have Harriett, wow, I loved her. She was considered over the hill, overlooked in her workplace and treated as though she was a piece of trash to throw away by a husband who wanted to start a family now his wife was too old. He soon discovered that he needed her far more than she needed him.

Then we have Nessa, a nurse who was gifted with the sight, and after the death of her husband and her twin daughters went off to college she finds her second wind. With the start of ‘The Change’, she rediscovers the gift that her grandmother had, the ability to right the wrongs done to murdered women.

And Jo, she has found her strength, the breadwinner in the family she is turned away by a bank manager who appears to live in the dark ages. Her daughter has inherited the strength that her mother has and is a well-balanced child growing up without fear.

There were moments in the book where I could feel my jaw tightening, such as when Jo was turned away at the bank and I remembered my own experience of being 25 and being told by a bank manager that I wasn’t a good risk for a mortgage because women of my age have lower earning potential as we all will leave our jobs to have babies (yes, this was the early 90s). And then again when Harriett was passed over for a promotion and her bosses treated her with such disdain despite all the clients she had won them.

This is a book that many women will identify with. If not the situations or the circumstances, there will be that moment when they say ‘yes, this is how I feel…’

I want there to be a time when growing old is the same for both genders, but because women experience ‘The Change’ that is not currently the case.

This book gave women strength, power and purpose and I sat up almost the whole of Monday night because I just couldn’t stop reading it. 

There are so many twists and turns in the plot and at one point I was terrified that the three women were going to come a cropper, but the small element of the supernatural was most certainly on their side, and for that I was grateful.

Did it show the darkness and corruption and how much the wealthy can get away with? Yes. But it also showed that if you’re able to play them at their own game you can ensure they receive punishment for their crimes, though perhaps not the same punishment these three women dealt out!

Pros

  • Strong, likeable characters
  • Sadly familiar battles
  • Good wins over evil

Cons

  • Could be seen as stereotyping a specific type of character
4-star rating
Category: Book reviews
Tags: Book reviews
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