Set in a small isolated island community Daughter of the Storm is a compelling second novel by Tina Callaghan. The story begins with American teen Lia (16) who has run away from New York seeking answers following the death of her father. Lia travels to Ireland to see her uncle, Harry Crowe, a publican who still lives on the small island her father emigrated from. But this is a novel of duelling narratives told from not just Lia’s perspective, but also the other inhabitants of the island.
Where Callaghan excels is in the description of a community dependent on the seasons. The island is idyllic in summer to the tourists who visit there, but, as Lia discovers, it quickly turns dark once the winter storms set in and it becomes cut off from the mainland. This is a story full of atmosphere, secrets, and death. After the first few chapters, it becomes completely gripping in its mix of the mythologies of classical antiquity, metamorphosis, vampires and ghosts. All elements that seem to drift from a crumbling, brooding mansion called ‘the hall’. Where it occasionally falls down is in the sheer volume of characters fighting for the reader’s attention.
Overall, though, this is a spine-chilling tale that will be a hit with previous fans of the author’s work and Young Adults.