So the Doves by Heidi James

So the Doves

Heidi James

With two timelines in alternating chapters, this is both a murder mystery and a study of how memory can deceive and distort the truth. Revisiting his teenage friendships, whilst investigating a crime in his old home town, a journalist finds his perceptions of the past challenged by the guilt and shame of the memories he had suppressed. The depiction of time and place is very evocative to anyone who has lived through the late eighties.


Memory, if we’re honest, is a servile, biased little beast, delivering up half-remembered scenes that cast, at the very least, a flattering light over even the worst moments. In my experience, one is either the hero or the victim in the reconstituted fragments we assemble as our memories, making significance out of coincidence, tying up loose ends, connecting the dots. Memory creates a story out of random events, a plot with a beginning, middle and end, scenes and a climax, dramas and tragedy.

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