Review: Skeletons by Jane Fallon


Title: Skeletons

Author: Jane Fallon

Published: Michael Joseph: Penguin March 2014

Read an Excerpt

Status: Read from March 19 to 20, 2014 — I own a copy {Courtesy the publisher}

My Thoughts:

British author Jane Fallon’s fifth novel, Skeletons, exposes the myth of a happy family by revealing the explosive secrets and lies they keep from one another.

After Jen Masterson covertly observes an intimate argument between her father-in-law, Charles, and a young woman outside of his office, she becomes convinced he is having an affair. Jen would rather pretend she saw nothing at all but horrified at the threat to the happy family she adores, she decides to confront the stranger, completely unprepared for the shocking secret she will uncover. Now Jen knows the truth, a secret she can’t share with her husband of twenty years, Jason, nor her best friend, Poppy, who also happens to be her sister-in-law but for how long can she pretend nothing is wrong? For how long can she live a lie?

Jen is caught on the horns of a dilemma, her aim is to protect the family she has made her own but keeping this enormous secret is a burden she finds impossible to bear, Fallon shares Jen’s circular debate about the issue until she is paralysed by indecision. I lost patience with Jen at times, even though I could sympathise with her quandary, there is an element of self absorption in the way in which Jen handled the entire affair, no matter how often she claimed otherwise, which is underscored by her relationship with her own parents.

Generally, I thought Skeletons to be well written with confident prose and dialogue, though I did feel the pace dragged somewhat in the middle. The ending is a little surprising but I think it also wholly appropriate. Trust is a crucial element of any relationship after all and it was brutally severed in the aftermath of the secret being revealed.

I found Skeletons to be a satisfying read, exploring a thought provoking moral dilemma which I think would particularly provide interesting fodder for book club discussion.

Skeletons is available to purchase from

Penguin AU I boomerang-books_long I Booktopia I Amazon AU I via Booko

AmazonUS I AmazonUK


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