FICTION: Four To Dawn – May J Panayi


Four to Dawn – seemed like it would be a fairly straightforward story of four women, who over the course of a Bank Holiday weekend, open up their lives to each other, whilst secretly having hidden away on the top floor of an empty office building.

These four women, all very different in their life experiences, draw the reader into their stories and you are left with deep empathy, sympathy and sadness at the trials and tribulations they each encountered.

Four to Dawn is not for the faint of heart. The writing is raw, painful and at times very explicit. The author’s intention to tell these women’s stories as realistically as possible comes singing through the story. Despite the nature of the material being covered, Four to Dawn is a truly compelling read. Perhaps a fraction slow to start, it eventually grabs you, shakes you about and spits you out. It is impossible to put down and fascinating reading. As a male, I was intrigued and fascinated by the Author’s revelations of the female psyche. It made me realize just how little I really did know or understand about how that most mysterious of things – the feminine mind, actually works.

The end of the book was a wonderful way to sum up the story of these women’s lives and although I am proud to say I guessed it, I have to timidly admit I guessed it only one page before the Author’s reveal.

If you like raw, true to life, gritty stories of loss, loneliness, pain, and suffering, with a hint of black humor with plenty of hope and celebration of what makes us human, then Four to Dawn is an awesome read.

I loved this book and take my hat off to the Author – Panayi is a talent. Five stars, without question.

Review was first published by Grant Leishman at:

For more information about Grant Leishman, visit:


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