Untangling the Webs

(11 customer reviews)


  • Author Name: Joy Pearson
  • Publication Date: 28/04/2018
  • Format: Paperback

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SKU: 9781912362363 Categories: , , , , Tags: , , , , ,


Untangling the Webs is a page-turning suspense novel exploring the indomitability of the human spirit, following parallel lives of four women: two in their early forties, one in her sixties, and one of seventy-six – Alison (an unlucky-in-love interior designer), Julia (a beauty therapist married to her second husband), Trudie (a widowed stress counsellor) and Phoebe (an upper-middle class widow).

Though they have had diverse backgrounds and events in their lives, their bond is strong loyalty and unconditional loving support to friends with whom they are closest. The women must overcome conflicts, toxic behaviour, unexpected emotional shocks, treachery and grief. Having to show grit, and aided by the common thread of a close female `rock’, each one struggles on towards overcoming huge obstacles assailing them, untangling strong threads of mystery, intent on achieving joy again. Humour, wisdom, music, cats, a determined female stalker, are shared with the reader – the invisible privileged guest drawn ever deeper into the colourful characters’ lives. The relevance of the men in their lives is deeply explored and the story offers many riveting cliffhangers.

Lost letters found four years after Trudie’s married lover, Laurie, disappears without trace, offer a few clues, but a serendipitous discovery in a Cornish church reveals vital information, if Trudie is brave enough to act upon it. Alison has to deal with repercussions from unearthing vicar Henry’s and police inspector Phil’s mendacious betrayals, before meeting lovely Stephen. Her discovery of Julia’s brutish husband David’s deep secret, breaks the impasse of her friend’s stressful situation. Phoebe’s cossetted life appears idyllic, but her late husband’s previously out-of-bounds den holds a breathtaking shock, needing Alison’s help to solve the enigma. Set in Cheshire, Worcestershire, Gloucestershire, Cornwall and the South of France, this debut novel captivates the reader with warm humanity through the author’s natural gift for storytelling.

Joy Pearson lives in Cheshire and has written scripts, serious poetry, amusing verse and her autobiography. A fund-raiser for several animal charities, she has, over the years, worked with families under stress, Shelter campaign for the homeless, and currently for Esther Rantzen’s Silver Line. An adoptee, having found her roots, she helps others voluntarily to find theirs. She is working on her second novel, the follow up to Untangling The Webs.

11 reviews for Untangling the Webs

  1. Catherine Green

    Untangling the Webs is the story of relationships and real life. We follow the journeys of women who have experienced love and heartbreak, who have battled through illness, raised children, nurtured careers, and kept on going when life got tough. This book picks up the story of a retired woman mourning for a missing lover, a woman in her early forties who finds love when she has given up hope, of women who have been “the other woman” in other people’s marriages. I liked the fact that all the characters had flaws and strengths in equal measure, making them likeable and believable. The webs mentioned in the title could well represent the physical journeys taken by these women and men, as well as the entanglements of their lives. They all meet up somewhere along the line, and I enjoyed reading the story as it wove together, and bits of the puzzle clicked into place. Oh, and there was some good sex in there as well, if you like it a little bit racy!

  2. Amazon Customer

    A thoroughly enjoyable read. Joy Pearson has a powerful and engaging voice, creating characters deeply complexed but most importantly flawed, creating personalities so naturally relatable and human. Untangling the Webs is a book that once you start, you will not be able to put down, taking you to various locations from Cornwall to the South of France, you will undoubtedly itch to travel! Beautifully descriptive and equally shocking and mysterious, Joy is a natural storyteller and her latest novel is a true triumph.

  3. Mrs Harley

    This book certainly reflects its title in terms of untangling the relationships and the characters involved. It is an excellent read and one of those books that once started you will not want to put idown. It is an ideal gift for yourself or a member of the family. I loved it.

  4. J. A. Davies

    A gripping 4 pronged story of four ladies lives who become intrinsically linked by past and present events.It has a satisfying and pleasing ending with a hint of mystery.

  5. Philip Baugh

    I thoroughly enjoyed this novel by Joy Pearson! The reader is immediately engaged with the colorful characters and their foibles. It is peppered with droll observations of adult relationships. The dialogue is sharp and witty. I heartily recommend this book to adults of all ages. I specify adults, as there is a healthy dose of frank sensual references. It offers great insight to relationships and an acute awareness of what to do and what not to do when forming one. Despite its pink and floral cover, do not presume it is for women only. On the contrary. Men would also be consumed and charmed by this book. I certainly was!

  6. Review from the USA

    Oh, my gosh! This is truly excellent! I’m only just started and on page 12. Alison is at Phoebe Cade’s. I am into her character already! I am observant of superb sentence structure and ear for dialogue! It reads so professionally like a seasoned writer. This can’t be your first book, I am thinking! My hat is off to you! Your success is well-earned! You wrote an outstanding novel! I understand the hard work that goes into it. Now is your time!

  7. Martin Scholes – That’s Books

    Untangling The Webs is a relationship novel with a difference because author Joy Pearson has brought her readers a novel that is not only about relationships, but a thriller too. It tells the story of four women and the men in their lives. Alison a single interior designer, Julia, a married beautician, Phoebe a widow who is not without funds, plus Trudie a stress counsellor and widow. They work through a number of issues that impinge on their lives in a number of ways. Deceit, cheating, shocks, and stalkers. This novel starts with betrayal, (the giveaway a pair of pink angora mittens, found in a place where no pink angora mittens were meant to be) and quickly slips into risky, dangerous behaviour to the aural backdrop of Pink Floyd. It careers through hearts being dented, mistakes, grief, secrets, showing how you really can’t keep a good person down, no matter how hard you try. The women in this novel are there for each other and it works very well on several levels. Joy Pearson is an exceptionally gifted writer, who brings her characters to vivid life as they try to find joy and happiness again. Will they succeed? You’ll have to read the novel to learn that, but Joy Pearson has the knack to make you care enough to keep turning the pages.

  8. Review from California

    I have just finished reading this novel by Joy Pearson and can hardly believe it is her first. Descriptions are so apt, with just enough to paint the picture, especially the man in Boscastle with the ‘wagging torch’ in the dark, as I imagined myself doing that, side to side to light my way with a flashlight, as we call them here. I love the clever analogies used in several places, so right. The reader is immediately engaged with colorful characters and their foibles. Peppered with droll observations of adult relationships, the dialogue is sharp and witty. I heartily recommend this book to everyone It offers great insight into relationships. Despite its pink floral cover, do not presume it is for women only. Men would also be consumed and charmed by this book. I certainly was.

  9. J. Ramsden Bradford

    There could not be a more perfect title for Joy Pearson’s debut novel than ‘Untangling the Webs’ as a sign of what the reader can look forward to. She skillfully weaves this multi-stranded tale of her characters’ inter-connected relationships and dilemmas, with a mystery at its heart! Symbolically, spiders & their webs exhibit many traits, including resourcefulness, cunning, intrigue & deceit; but also fortune, feminine patience & wisdom. It’s all in here! This is a novel that extols the value of strongly-wrought (particularly feminine & feline) friendships, & pair-bonding in all its partnered & familial forms, but there are also less pleasant ‘trickster’ characters too. The romantic entanglements range from blossoming, flourishing, kind, caring and sexual love to splits, misunderstandings, naivety, downright deception, a smattering of fetishism, callousness, and the sadness of absence, loneliness & loss.

    Joy Pearson has mastered the art of reader engagement by creating not just a riveting plot & sub-plots, but characters you care about & can identify with. You want to know what will happen to them next & ultimately. (I couldn’t guess!) This is the author as the spinner & weaver of destiny. The novel is a literary dreamcatcher. Did I mention there are mysteries in this book?!!

    I especially like how small details are incorporated – seamlessly woven almost in passing – but born of the author’s observation of environment & nature, and her experience of life. There are some lovely incidental descriptions – she is clearly a gardener – but watch out for the occasional pithy one-liner summation of a situation, such as: “Emotionally, disappearance was a powerful weapon.” “The one who leaves is not the one enduring the silence.”

    Did I say there was a mystery at the heart of this novel?!!! As it closes, some things seem to be working out… or do they? No spoilers here! The reader is left suspended, hanging by a curious thread. But it is a thread connecting this debut novel to its eagerly awaited follow-up!

  10. A. W

    Untangling the Webs is a captivating novel exploring the lives and background of four different women and their various relationships in past and present. Fully aware of distinctive types of personality and cultural influences, this novel operates as a twenty-first century “comedy of manners” in terms of its captivating and realistic mode of writing… A very significant novel dealing with female and male relationships, family problems, reminiscing about past positive memories but always remaining firmly rooted in the present and aware of future possibilities. A remarkable first work.

  11. GR, Scotland

    This is the kind of book you can just sink into, indulge yourself and enjoy, from the first page to the last. Definitely an author worth following! This novel follows the lives of four women in different stages of maturity; all with lives both behind them and all with the potential of giving so much more in the future. Their lives become intertwined through circumstances, they each have their own traits, worries and cause for happiness. It makes a lovely change not to be reading about young women in their 20s and 30s. Alison, Julie, Trudie and Phoebe have all had a past and are therefore much more interesting to read about. They value their friendships and there are a lot of shared confidences. Joy Pearson’s writing is faultless .. a beautifully flowing story with a good use of language and so very readable! I have wallowed in this novel, and really hope to read more from this author. A lovely warm read to intersperse with all the chilling thrillers in my kindle!

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