In Your Light
Author: Annalie Grainger
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Thriller
Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK
Publication Date: May 3rd 2018
Format: Paperback (240 pages)
Mella Laverty had been missing for eight months, six days and eighteen hours. Seventeen-year-old Lil’s heart was broken when her big sister, Mella, went missing. Now she is ‘Lil After’ – angry, cold and dark. One especially dark and rainy night, Lil accidentally runs a strange girl, ‘Seven’ down in her car. Tiny, gentle, terrified Seven was born into the Sisterhood of the Light, a seemingly peaceful community that believes in the healing power of the sun. When a fire tore through the compound, Seven ran for her life, straight into Lil’s path. But now the Sisterhood is unwilling to let Seven go. What could she have fled that is worse than flames …? As Lil and Seven’s stories unfold and intertwine, they begin to trust each other with dark secrets. And there’s more darkness to come …
My Rating: ★★★★.5
Let’s start by admiring how gorgeous the cover of this debut novel is…. There we go, now you’ve had time to look at it, did you notice the two girls stood on the cover? Because i DID NOT notice them until way after I finished reading the book and it’s blown my mind just a little bit… The embossed raindrops re gorgeous too, I couldn’t stop stroking the cover whilst reading this one so I guess I knew it would capture my heart in some way.
I picked up In Your Light at YAShot back in April after the lovely Katie Webber recommended it to me. She sold it to me as cults, sisters, dark and Wales. Basically ticking every box of things I love to read about!
In Your Light is a dark book. It contrasts chapters from within the Sisterhood of the Light against chapters from the outside and I really loved how that was done. It even went as far in the formatting as to use different fonts for the different types of chapters and this pleased my little heart. There was something very uneasy when reading the chapters from within the Sisterhood and I often felt a crawling sensation when I could sense what terrors were coming next for those involved. I was definitely intrigued by the idea of the Sisterhood and as the tension amped up towards the end I was truly terrified about what could happen next.
There really is no messing around when it comes to the pace of this book. Within the first few chapters we learn that Lil’s sister Mella has gone missing under possibly mysterious circumstances, Lil discovers a hurt young girl who definitely has a lot more to her than is initially let on and then the storm and flooding begins. There are some incredibly tense scenes in this book where I as the reader was doing the cliché holding of breath we so often read about in YA books. But who is Seven? Why does she speak so strangely? How has she never seen a boy before? Lil really does land herself in the middle of a mystery when she comes across Seven and it leads her down some interesting roads…
I really loved Lil right from the beginning of the book. There was just something about her that I immediately clicked with. My heart ached for her when I thought about the fact her sister had gone missing and the guilt that Lil felt about it. Kiran was just wonderful and I really enjoyed seeing how the dynamic between Lil and Kiran changed throughout the book.
Time for my favourite thing about the book (aside from the sister aspect and the cult)…. This book had SO MUCH WELSHNESS and I could honestly scream about it forever. I knew the book would be set in Wales as I’d been told this but what I did not expect to see (and it was first for me) was actual use of the Welsh language in a YA novel. As a Welsh speaker this was such a glorious moment and I was SO flipping excited whenever bits of Welsh were put in. For me it added a really authentic feel to the novel as it is set up North where a lot of people still speak Welsh as their first language. It just made my little patriotic heart sing with joy!
To summarise: In Your Light is dark, twisty and captivating. You won’t be able to take your eyes off the pages as you devour the words trying to find out what happens next. With layered and complex characters, an exciting climax and a good dose of mystery, there’s something in here for everyone. An intense but powerful read that will stay with me for some time.
Have you read In Your Light? Will you be adding it to your TBR?
What are your favourite books about cults?