About the Book:
2017: 19 year old Tallulah is going out on a date, leaving her baby with her mother, Kim.
Kim watches her daughter leave and, as late evening turns into night, which turns into early morning, she waits for her return. And waits.
The next morning, Kim phones Tallulah’s friends who tell her that Tallulah was last seen heading to a party at a house in the nearby woods called Dark Place.
She never returns.
2019: Sophie is walking in the woods near the boarding school where her boyfriend has just started work as a head-teacher when she sees a note fixed to a tree.
‘DIG HERE’ . . .
A cold case, an abandoned mansion, family trauma and dark secrets lie at the heart of Lisa Jewell’s remarkable new novel.
(Releases on September 7, 2021).
“How can two people go to the pub on a Friday night and never come back and nobody know what happened to them? The mystery consumes her, whole.”
Phenomenal!! My heart is still pounding. Lisa Jewel’s best book ever!!
First of all, once I started reading this book, I went back and really examined the cover. Perfection! I appreciate when thought and care is taken with a book’s cover.
This absolute gem of a thriller is divided into five parts and the story is told from several different points of view. They are all very distinct voices and are all vital to the plot. Right from the beginning I was mesmerized by Kim Murray’s story, the mother of Tallulah, the missing girl. Tallulah’s point of view is also absolutely riveting, as a teenage mother to a young child who is trying to get her university degree.
Added into the mix is Sophie Beck who is a writer of detective books and who has recently moved to the small village where the main characters live. Sophie is struggling with having made the decision to leave London to live with her partner, who has taken a job as head of school. To Lisa Jewell’s credit she ties in all these seemingly disparate characters and makes the reader really care about their fates.
The book begins with the night when Tallulah and her boyfriend disappear into thin air. They had been at a late-night pool party at the home of Tallulah’s school friend but she seems clueless about Tallulah’s whereabouts. Kim knows that Tallulah would never just abandon her beloved son Noah, who had been left in Kim’s care that night. Not only has Kim been on a mission to find her daughter ever since, Kim fights her rising panic that no one else is treating this like a missing person’s case.
Sophie becomes involved in the now year-old mystery when she and boyfriend move into the school residence Maypole House. She befriends Kim, who is now raising her grandson on her own. No one has seen or heard from Tallulah or her boyfriend Zach since the night they disappeared. Sophie becomes caught up in solving the mystery and within a short period of time, uncovers crucial information and provides it to the local inspector assigned to the case.
I have already given more detail than I intended with this review! What happened to Tallulah and Zach that night? Did the local police ignore obvious clues? Was Zach somehow involved in Tallulah’s disappearance? I ADORE all of Lisa Jewell’s books but if you start with just one, read this one! The complex characters, the surprising plot twists, and the heartbreaking search of a mother for her missing child against all odds make this a must-read, and one of my favorite thrillers of the year. Bravo to the author (and dare I say I would read more books featuring Sophie Beck?) Happy reading!
(Thanks to the publisher for providing an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.)