‘The Other Daughter’ is the latest book by Caroline Bishop.
When Jessica discovers a shocking secret about her birth, she leaves her London home and travels to Switzerland in search of answers. She knows her journalist mother spent time in the country forty years earlier, reporting on the Swiss women’s liberation movement, but what she doesn’t know is what happened to her while she was there. Can Jess summon the courage to face the truth about her family, or will her search only hurt herself and those around her even more?
It’s difficult to go into too much detail about this book, without giving too much away but it’s a beautifully written story about a search for answers.
The story is written in the past and present of mother and daughter Evelyn and Jess. After her mother died, Jess discovered something that left any unanswered questions, taking her to Switzerland looking for answers. Whilst in Switzerland, she works for a professional couple called Julia and Michael, teaching their children Lea and Luca, English. As Jess helps improve the children’s English, she’s determined to find some answers to her past.
The past narrative is seen from Evelyn, who aspires to be a successful journalist writing current affairs and hard hitting stories in the 1970’s, but it’s difficult to be taken seriously as a writer in male dominated industry and she finds herself the butt of jokes. But persistence pays off when she travels to Switzerland to follow a women’s movement looking for equality. But just as her career has taken off, Evelyn becomes pregnant and fears that all her hard work will be for nothing when the baby is born.
This book is a beautifully written story of two women finding their places in life and the struggles they have faced along the way. I loved Evelyn, her passion and determination for equality and for her own right to work made for fascinating reading. It’s was also incredibly reflective of how far society has moved forward. Granted, we’re still along way of from the ideal scenario but, to think of time when a woman couldn’t stand at a bar to order a drink made for astounding reading.
Caroline paints a vivid picture with her writing, whether it was the bustling city of London or the Swiss Alps, she sweeps the reader away in this poignant tale. This book is Caroline’s debut novel and I thought it was a tremendous, story, well paced with relatable characters and never once did my interest waver.
Jess was also an interesting woman who’s faced some struggles, things that should have come naturally to her have been cruelly taken away and she battled emotions with this and this does make for sympathetic and relatable reading.
A fascinating story into the exploration of women’s rights and one woman’s journey into the background of her birth, ‘The Other Daughter’ is an emotional story that really engaged my attention.
You can buy ‘The Other Daughter’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.