With unusual main characters and a fast-paced story, this book keeps you intrigued for the whole story.
I liked that the main character was a 13-year-old boy, desperately trying to solve the mystery of his mothers disappearance and subsequent murder. It was a slightly more unusual protagonist than an adult or detective, and it was interesting to follow the thought process of a child through a very traumatic incident.
I also enjoyed the fact that there wasn’t any confusion about who ‘did the crime’ so to speak – the novel builds the story as much as it possibly can, and then starts to hint towards a side of one of the characters that you don’t see coming. The boy, Jack, has fascinating relationships with each of the other central characters, including his sisters, the detectives working his case, his criminal best friend and most intriguingly, his father. The novel focuses so much on the disappearance of his mother that I almost genuinely forgot his father existed, except for the odd mention of him that raises the sneaking suspicion that all is not as it seems with his relationship with his father.
I loved the constant twists and turns, which ran right to the end. I would admit that it was slightly predictable towards the end, but this actually made for an extra satisfying ending in my opinion, rather than being an anticlimax. It felt like a very fulfilling ending, as the characters get what they deserve (or that’s how it seems anyway), while also ending suddenly enough that there wasn’t room for any ‘happy ever after’ type writing. After a fast-paced thriller, I turned the final page both wishing for more but also pleased it ended the way it did.
The novel was quite an easy and quick read for me, but I thoroughly enjoyed it and could hardly tear myself away from it! I haven’t read a Belinda Bauer novel before but now I’m thinking I’m missing out on a really great author.
Black Swan, 2018