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Vanessa: An utterly gripping novel of love and friendship

A dancer born in the back streets of Paris. A love and friendship she never knew existed. A secret she must keep close to her heart.

Born to a troubled mother and a resentful father, and raised in an impoverished area of Paris, circumstances present little expectation for Vanessa. Only her natural ability to dance and the self-centred ambitions of her dance teacher offers respite from the turbulence of her early life.

Eventually, she escapes. She travels to Brittany to be with the captivating Monique, and by the time she returns home she has learned to use her beauty and sexuality to her advantage. She knows how to get what she wants and is determined to turn her life around.

Years later, Vanessa’s dying mother tells her a story; a story that helps her understand and changes the course of her life completely. A story that compels Vanessa to travel to London and search for the sister she never knew.

Arriving in England, Vanessa resolves to track down her sister at all costs. But a chance meeting with Malissa, a woman who shares her sister’s surname, draws Vanessa onto a completely different path; a path paved with love and kindness and which leads towards a new life far removed from the one she’d envisaged as her destiny.

As Vanessa’s friendship with Malissa grows, and the pieces of her sister’s life start to slot into place, Vanessa is forced to make a choice: reveal her secret and risk shattering the joy she has finally found. Or keep it. And live with the consequences.

Vanessa is the story of a girl hardened by her upbringing and a woman softened by love. A love she never knew existed; a love she thought was beyond her, but a love which promised a life she is loath to destroy.

If you like complex, character-based stories that show the beauty of friendship and offer twists, turns, and heart-felt emotion then you’ll love Gary Milsom’s Vanessa.


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