The Nesting by C.J. Cooke
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
“Once upon a time I thought that I’d be better off dead.”
The Nesting by C.J. Cooke is incredibly atmospheric and deeply rooted in Nordic folklore and culture. It is at times a thriller and at times a horror with supernatural elements and a deeply gothic setting. Set in the forests of Norway in the deepest part of winter, it follows Lexi who in a moment of desperation, steals Sophies identity and resume in order to obtain a position as a nanny in order to explore her imaginary roots there. Lexi isn’t in the best mental health; she recently attempted suicide, is suffering from depression and is just off from a long-term relationship. She is fragile, heartbroken and her decision making isn’t at its strongest (clearly) but when she arrives to assist widower Tom with his two daughters, she makes the best of it until the supernatural element starts to rear its supernatural head. Tom’s wife, Aurelia has just recently passed, the assumption is suicide but is it? There’s an interesting cast of characters aside from Tom, Lexi, and Aurelia; all who play excellent supportive roles, the most interesting is nature itself within Norway, the Fjords and the forests, and what may be hidden there pushing back against industry.
I really enjoyed The Nesting for all its chilling haunting ambiance but also because Cooke’s writing is vivid and imaginative; she builds up a sense of dread as the pages turn and the addition of Nordic folklore and superstitions was the cherry on the top. The past and present retelling from both Lexi and Aurelia gives unique insight and tied together similarities between the two women. There are some amazing plot twists and the pacing is perfect for the creepiness of the story.
Thank you to Berkley Publishing Group and NetGalley for providing me with a DRC in exchange for my review.
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