Daddy, Daddy's Girl, Darling (Book 1) Father of Lies (Book 2)
Note that Daddy, Daddy's Girl, and Darling are all the same book they're just reprints with new titles.
Father of Lies is sequel to Daddy which should actually be titled 'mother of lies' but I'll get to that.
Daddy is a really controversial book. You can run an entire English debate class on this book and its content.
There's a really sad thing about Lia because she's searching for validation and love and acceptance from the adults in her life when she's in a position where she's feeling abandoned, alone and lost in the mix of her parents divorce and Nick her mothers new lover is the only one who seems to see her.
You get the whole predator in my home thing going on because Em brings Nick into her house and is completely oblivious to the fact that Nick is honing in on her daughter and then there's Lia's father who Lia has to beg to take her in because of the intensity of her affair with Nick begins to overwhelm her and he only does it because the police bring her there and is guilted into it, and still doesn't seem to pick up on Lia's silent message that 'Hey I'm a victim and I'm afraid'
On the other hand Nick as horrible as it is, is the only one that's willing to give Lia the love and attention that she's searching for. Nick treat's Lia like an adult, forces her to face adult situations and decision, forces her to be accountable for her participation in their affair while he steps back and refuses to take accountability for it himself or what he's doing to Lia.
This adds to Lia's dynamic that she's really the only adult in the book.
Nick is getting to play mister sex with mom and daughter while he establishes a marriage with Em and eventually has a child with her, Lia's father Ross is busy getting married to one of his students and also having another child while Lia is left to fend for herself.
Lia even acknowledges this issue later in the book that her parents are able to go on having other relationships forgetting that she exists and new having kids with their new spouses, but are completely incapable of loving the children that they're going off having. Which means the only one the new generation has to love them is Lia because she knows shes the only one capable of love.
Unfortunately many of the questions that Inglis raises she leaves open to the readers interpretation.
Its totally sad that Lia is pulled into this fascination with Nick, she's fascinated that he's a man who notices her, shes fascinated by his chest hair and the fact that he spends a lot of time in her bed. She begins to fall in love (or so she thinks) with Nick and realizes this then debates her relationship with Nick and how he feels about her because she literally calls him on it. He can't love her mother if he's been screwing her all summer.
But she misunderstands the concept of love and its tainted by her allowance of their relationship because their relationship is all she has to base everything she knows on.
Its earth shattering because once Lia finds herself pregnant with Nicks child she's devastated by the fact that he talks her into getting an abortion.
By the second time she finds out that she's pregnant with his child its not by accident. She actually plans the second pregnancy because she feels like she's losing everything and has no one and wants someone to love so she chooses Nicks baby. The way she goes about getting pregnant really shows how much her relationship with Nick and her lacking relationship with her parents have warped her outlook on life and who she is as a person.
Which is where Father of Lies picks up.
Nick and Lia's daughter Georgie comes home to find the truth. Lia in an attempt to stop her from finding out goes back home after being estranged from her family for years because of an event in their past that involves Georgie and Nick.
Father of Lies is double depraved, double tragic and twice as horrific, and again Inglis leaves many questions unanswered for the readers to interpret on their own.
Father of Lies destroys all the previous emotions established in Daddy and it focuses a lot of attention of Nicks perversity and Lia's tolerance and acceptance of his depravity despite knowing how bad it is.Lia makes excuses, romanticizes it, even refuses to face it and deal with it. Just being near Nick flips Lia's switch and she's back to opening her legs for him while ignoring the fact that Nick has already screwed their daughter and she's screwing her brother.
It feels like Inglis attempts to redeem Nick by uncovering more of his childhood abuse we hear about in Daddy but she expands on it as if it excuses what Nick does to Georgie like oh poor him - "If he knew Lia would have came back he wouldn't have done what he'd done to Georgie." Lia is back to being Nick's toy and she's too busy scrambling to cover up the history and lies and secrets to even pay attention to what's really going on. Same as her parents did to her when she was a kid.
Nick's explanation behind what happened to Georgie in the past does not redeem him. In fact it makes it that much worse. Its sickening. Its the same thing with Matty and Luke. They've been raised by these people who are completely incapable of normalcy and what follows is an exploration and practice in abuse, incest and manipulation.
All along Lia has grown to be a mother of two, she's a PHD, she's married and spends all her time away from home following wolves - which ties in to her fixation on comparing humans to animals, monsters, beasts and gods in her previous book Daddy.
Inglis/Lia has a fixation on relating humans to animals and stripping away her characters humanity by making them animals practicing their animalistic natures which seem to be the authors way of excusing all her cast of their failings and accountability. Its like Inglis trying to say to the readers my characters aren't human, their animals and they're acting out instinctually and they're stripped of their humanity so that these base actions are excusable because they're no longer human.
What surprises me or rather doesn't surprise me because really its expected is how much Lia's past has really affected her as an adult and how she has become just as bad as Nick and allows it even though she knows whats happening even after Georgie is put into the hospital.
What happens after the open ending of Nick saying he will follow Lia and be a part of what she does, which hints that he's willing to be with her and finally take life seriously and Georgie leaving home and Lia because of her wanting to be with her brother is an attempt at giving a happy family resolution in the insanity and sickness is completely unanswered and unresolved.
The abuse and the demented idea that this is or should be acceptable is perpetuated and continues on to the next generation.
I don't sympathize with any of the characters anymore. None of them are redeemable, none of them are worth saving.
I could go on but I'd be going on forever.
These books are intense and are very well written and I have respect for authors that are able to write such topics so well and are able to evoke such intense emotions from myself as a reader. I enjoyed the emotional read but I can't say if I liked or hated these books because both are equal parts right.