Book Review: Idle Hands by Cassondra Windwalker

You can call me Ella. You generally assign me a whole host of other preposterous monikers. I think the least imaginative name I’ve heard is “the devil”, but I’ll answer to it if I must.

After making the courageous decision to leave her abusive husband, Perdie and her three young children start over and finally find the safety and love they deserve. But years later, when tragedy strikes, Perdie is left wondering if the choice she made to leave has led them to this moment.

If she were given the opportunity to take it all back and stay, would she?

In a frantic bid to protect her family, Perdie makes a deal to do just that. But in a world where the devil pulls the strings, can Perdie really change the past?

Brimming with enlightened observations and brilliant voice, Idle Hands is a haunting examination of grief, resilience, and what we’d give to spend another moment with the ones we love.


Perdie decides to leave her abusive husband. To begin with, it’s hard on her and her three children, Hannah, Rachel and Tad but eventually, the family finds some of the happiness that they have previously missed out on.

That is, until ten years later, tragedy strikes.

This book fascinated me from the first page to the last word. So much so that I read it across one day.

I found Perdie such a frustrating but compelling character. I wanted her to be OK but at the same time, I wanted to scream through the pages at her. She is broken and at times, I struggled to have sympathy with her. However, I could not relate to her on the physical abuse and it’s hard to know how I would react in that situation. Whatever she chose, she was potentially in a no win situation and that’s a horrible circumstance to be in. She was certainly a character of many layers who wanted to do the best for her children.

The plot very cleverly explores the question of ‘what if’ as well as family, love and friendship. It’s all woven into a strong, heartbreaking story that I knew was going to have an effect on me from the moment I began to read. The majority of us have probably, at some point said ‘I would give anything to spend some more time with..,’ or ‘I wish I had more time.’ This book has a unique perspective on that.

I found the ‘Ella’ part of the narrative very interesting and it added another gripping element to the characters and the story.

There is not much more I can say about this book without giving things away. I am hoping you discover this incredible novel for yourself. Even having finished it, I can’t stop thinking about it.


About Cassondra Windwalker… 

Cassondra Windwalker grew up on plains and longed for mountains. Today she lives by the frozen sea. She earned a BA of Letters at the University of Oklahoma and pursued careers in bookselling and law enforcement before resigning her post to write full time.

A poet, essayist, and novelist, her short-form work has appeared in numerous literary journals and art books. Her full-length books of poetry and prose are available in bookstores and online. She welcomes conversations with readers through her social media platforms and in the occasional coffee shop.

Say hi to Cassondra on Twitter and Instagram.

Idle Hands is due to be released by Agora Books on 23rd July. Click to view on Amazon UK


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I’m Laura. I started Novel Kicks in 2009. I wanted a place to post my writing as well as give other writers like me the opportunity to do the same. There is also a monthly book club, a writing room which features writing prompts, book reviews, competitions, author interviews and guest posts.

I grew up by the sea (my favourite place in the world) and I currently live in Hampshire. I am married to Chris, have a cat named Buddy and I would love to be a writer. I’m trying to write the novel I’ve talked so much about writing if only I could stop pressing delete. I’ve loved writing since creative writing classes in primary school. I have always wanted to see my teacher Miss Sayers again and thank her for the encouragement. When not trying to write the novel or writing snippets of stories on anything I can get my hands on, I love reading, dancing like a loon and singing to myself very badly. My current obsession is Once Upon a Time and I would be happy to live with magic in the enchanted forest surrounded by all those wonderful stories provided that world also included Harry Potter. I love reading chick lit. contemporary fiction and novels with mystery.

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