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Jan Turk Petrie
Towards the Vanishing Point
In the North of England in1938, two ten-year-old girls, Lily Hetherington and Stella Marsden, form a close if unlikely friendship that endures despite their wartime experiences. After the war, the two women are working as nursing auxiliaries when Lily meets male nurse Will Bagshaw. Stella begins to hear sinister rumours about the man, but the besotted Lily won’t listen to a word said against him as he begins to control her life. Can Stella make her see sense before it’s too late? Building to a tense, dramatic climax, this is a story of friendship, love, loyalty and the ultimate betrayal.
Plot/Idea: 9 out of 10
Originality: 9 out of 10
Prose: 9 out of 10
Character/Execution: 10 out of 10
Overall: 9.25 out of 10


Plot: Petrie crafts a rich, suspenseful historical story that centers on the lives of two female friends. The author deftly explores the impact of emotional and physical abuse and the impact of war.

Prose: Towards the Vanishing Point features an even, polished, and descriptive prose style with dialogue, phrasings, and references that aptly capture the era.

Originality: The novel's focus on the subtleties of an enduring female friendship is an evergreen concept. Petrie offers a compelling blend of genre elements, successfully staging a story of relationships and abusive power dynamics in a vividly realized setting.

Character/Execution: Readers will come to deeply know the primary characters, as they grow from children to adults. The story's sinister yet nuanced antagonist injects chilling conflict and complexity into the well-researched, emotionally resonant narrative.

Date Submitted: August 12, 2020


I found this to be a gripping story, it did put me in mind of Daphne Du Maurier.

Once started it was hard to put down, the friendship between Stella and Lilly was a strong one, until the day that male nurse Will arrives.

But Will is not quite what he seems, and though Stella tries to tell her, Lilly who is under his spell won't hear a thing about him, after all, they are just rumours, right?

Towards the vanishing point is a tale of love, friendship, and betrayal

A book for all fans of mystery, with a slight gothic overtone.

Angela Rhodes, A LoveReading Ambassador

Readers' Favorite.

Book Review - 5-stars
Reviewed by Edith Wairimu for Readers' Favorite

Set during the tumultuous times of World War II, Towards the Vanishing Point by Jan Turk Petrie is a novel about a longstanding friendship that survives through years of heartache and devastation. Just before the beginning of World War II, Lily Hetherington and Stella Marsden, both ten years old, become friends. Their friendship remains firm even after the war, which leaves a trail of loss and devastation in its wake. Both girls suffer grief and untold heartbreak by the end of the war but, despite all they go through, their friendship continues. As they work as nurse orderlies after the war, Lily meets Will Bagshaw, a senior nurse at the hospital. Despite warnings from Stella, Lily marries Will. The beautiful relationship that Lily envisioned turns into a nightmare and it is up to Stella to rescue her friend.

Towards the Vanishing Point brings attention to an important topic. Lily suffers emotional and physical abuse from her husband. In many ways, she feels trapped until Stella makes an effort to intervene and save her friend. The events of the war in the background of the plot highlight the painful moments experienced by Stella and Lily in their personal lives. The language and happenings in the story reflect effectively what it would have been like to live during and post- World War II UK. Stella and Lily’s friendship is also inspiring as it defies all odds. Both find solace in their friendship even in the hardest of times. Towards the Vanishing Point by Jan Turk Petrie is a moving novel that focuses on domestic abuse.