Rating: ☕️☕️ 1/2
This book was given to me by my boyfriend’s mom, who often hands down her books to me once she is done reading them. She is a big fan of horror, suspense, and crime, so whenever I receive a book from her I know I’m in for a thrill ride! Although this book was not my favourite, it was a quick read and it wasn’t all that bad. The mystery kept me intrigued all the way through, and the resolution was certainly satisfying and interesting. I would recommend this book for fans of mystery novels, but would categorize this one as more of a quick summer read. However, if you have not read some of the bigger suspense writers such as Gillian Flynn or Paula Hawkins, you might want to give them a try first!
This novel follows Lisa Kallisto, whose best friend’s thirteen-year-old daughter goes missing under her watch. This does not bode well, as another girl went missing and was later found dead. Fearing this might be the beginning of a pattern, Lisa is determined to discover what happened to the missing girl. As she investigates, she discovers that her friends and neighbours may not be quite who they appear to be, all while hiding a few dark secrets of her own. In a story like this, the reader really gets to delve into just how messed up cookie cutter families can be underneath their flawless surface.
Some reasons I gave this book such a low rating included the random side plots that had no relevancy whatsoever to the story. A small example of this was the main female detective and her constant complaining about her boobs. So much of her inner monologue dealt with considering breast reduction surgery. I mean why is this important? I felt like the only purpose it was trying to serve was to reinforce the character’s physical description and it was unnecessary. Yes, you can describe your character as having big boobs, but why keep coming back to this when it doesn’t connect to the story in any way? And don’t get me wrong, I’m not offended because we were talking about boobs 😛 I would have felt the same way if it were any other aspect of anyone’s physical description. It’s like if a character had glasses, was constantly thinking about getting laser eye surgery, and it didn’t come into play at any point in the book. It was just boring to read all the time when it didn’t matter!
Moreover, the bigger disconnected side plot concerned an extramarital affair between two of the characters. To be fair, it wasn’t even a full blown affair. These characters hooked up once in the past, and for some unknown reason it comes to light. This is a situation where I felt the author was just giving characters dark secrets for the sake of having dark secrets. This dalliance had no connection to the present situation, although it could have been justified and relevant in the way it effected the characters who found out about it. However, it didn’t seem to have any important impact at all.
Negatives aside, there was one character in this book that I loved and it was Lisa’s husband, Joe. He just seemed too good to be true! He was so kind, understanding, and innocently naive. He did nothing at all to deserve the hardships that are thrown his way, and although he is hurt by the missing girl and familial situations, he faced it all with such strength! I wouldn’t be able to handle situations like he did. Lisa better appreciate him for being so incredible!
Overall, this was a quick and semi-enjoyable read. Excluding the side plots, the main story was interesting and fun to follow. I definitely wouldn’t rule this one out if you’re a fan of mystery, and as I said it’s a really quick read. I wouldn’t want to spend more than a couple of sittings on it, but although I didn’t enjoy it all that much, I think a lot of people would!
To learn more about Paula Daly’s works you can click here –> http://www.randomhouse.com.au/authors/paula-daly.aspx