Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
They find her just as the sun is beginning to rise in the early morning mist. They had begun at dawn, the group of searchers keen to get going. A missing child spurred everyone on. In the end, it was a flash of colour, a bright neon pink that caught her eye. They had been looking for pink.
Nothing tests your faith like being a mother. The first time your children walk to school alone, their first sleepover, when they finally fly the nest. As a parent, you have to believe that everything will be OK.
It’s why, when Lydia’s sixteen-year-old daughter Zoe goes on a school camping trip, she has no idea of the horrors that will unfold. It’s why, when Lydia gets a call saying that her daughter has disappeared, she refuses to give up.
As she searches the mountains, her voice hoarse from calling Zoe’s name, she imagines finding her. She envisions being flooded with relief as she throws her arms around her child, saying, ‘you gave us such a scare’. She pictures her precious girl safely tucked in bed that evening.
It’s why, when they find Zoe’s body, Lydia can barely believe it. It is unthinkable. Her little girl has gone.
Something terrible happened, she is sure of it. Something made Zoe get out of her sleeping bag in the middle of the night, walk out of the warmth and safety of the cabin, into the darkness of the mountains. Driven by the memory of her youngest child, Lydia needs to find out the truth. What kind of mother would she be if she didn’t?
A heartbreaking, redemptive and beautifully crafted novel which brings to life a mother’s worst nightmare, questioning how well we ever really know the people we love the most. Fans of Jodi Picoult, Kerry Fisher and Liane Moriarty will be blown away by this stirring, unforgettable tale.
This is every parent – and teacher’s – nightmare, when a teenager goes missing whilst on a school camping trip. Zoe Bloom is Lydia’s youngest daughter . . . . what made her leave the cabin she shared with three other girls? When Zoe’s body is found, Lydia is desperate to discover what happened to her but that search for the truth will prove very revealing and have so many surprise revelations along the way.
Zoe is seen through the eyes of her peers, her family, her teachers and friends in this moving story. She’s a bright, able and pretty sixteen year old, attractive, popular, somewhat spoiled, but she’s also mean, a bully and downright nasty when she doesn’t get her own way. Unsurprisingly, not everyone even likes her – but does someone hate her enough to kill her? Everyone connected to her seems to have secrets that are slowly revealed as the police investigation into her death continues and the tensions escalate between the potential suspects.
The story is told from multiple points of view, revealing the thoughts, actions and reactions of those who knew Zoe to the unfolding investigations and helping the reader get to know this multi-faceted young lady. This is a tragic but moving story that isn’t just a murder mystery or detective story. It also a story which shows the impact of such a tragedy on the lives of those who survive her, including her family, friends and teachers. It is a dark story with plenty of twists to keep you guessing and I didn’t want to put it down until I’d finished it and discovered what really happened to Zoe – and why. I have no hesitation in highly recommending this book.
Thanks to Bookouture and NetGalley for my copy of this book which I have voluntarily read and honestly reviewed.
Nicole Trope went to university to study Law but realised the error of her ways when she did very badly on her first law essay because, as her professor pointed out, ‘It’s not meant to be a story.’
She studied teaching instead and used her holidays to work on her writing career and complete a Masters’ degree. In between raising three children, working for her husband and renovating houses, she has published six novels. She lives in Sydney, Australia.
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