It is quite difficult to believe that she is only 39 years old as she comes across as being much older than that. She talks about her husband’s ‘nonsense’, a phrase I would expect my grandmother to use.
Husband Glen has been accused of a terrible crime: the kidnap and possible murder of a two year old child. His character is very one dimensional, we only see him through Jean’s eyes, and it merely consists of him trying to persuade her that he didn’t do it.
Enter D. I. Bob Sparkes, a man whose life is deeply affected by this case. He is a good man that desperately wants to find the young girl; unfortunately this leads to some decisions that are no more than his heart ruling his head. To say that the police investigation was inept is an understatement of gigantic proportions. They follow false leads like a donkey follows a carrot.
Kate is the reporter who manages to get inside jean Taylor’s head. Fiona Barton does a great job of showing a different side to journalists. Yes, it is cut-throat, all of them trying to get the same exclusive, but they are also people and and not always the unfeeling beasts that they are made out to be.
Bella Elliott is the child who has been taken. If there is a problem with this book it is that Bella does not really have a part in the story, in that it’s all about the adults. The only way that Bella can affect us is through her name. Bella Elliott doesn’t roll off the tongue, it sits in your mouth, chewable, hard to swallow. This is the only connection we have with the lost child. Purposeful or co-incidence? I’m not sure, but it works.