Book Review – Typhoid Mary by Charlie Dalton

First published, 2019

⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Now, it was the middle of the night. I was struggling with a timeline for a novel I’m working on, and I decided to check out the scary films on Amazon Prime. Having found something that looked suitably creepy, I spent a good hour and a half watching a hit and miss story, supposedly about Typhoid Mary but which in fact was more about what happens when two idiots think they’ll make their fortune from a video camera and a story they don’t really believe in. However, it got me thinking about Typhoid Mary, so when I saw this short story was on Kindle for free, I finished the film and got reading.

This beautifully-written short story follows the history of Mary, an eight-year-old girl whose adopted family is hacked to death, seemingly in front of her, on the farm where she lives.

When Nadine, a police officer suffering her own heartbreaking loss, is assigned to the case, she can’t help but feel drawn to Mary. The fact of Mary’s foster parents killing all the other six children and each other in front of the child seems to compound Nadine’s feeling for the child. But is there more to this story than meets the eye? And how exactly did Mary survive?

Dark and compelling, stories with frightening children as the protagonists have a way of stealing our sleep, and this was no exception. Carefully constructed, I was sorry to finish it so quickly, but will look for more from this author in future.