It’s my great pleasure to take part in the blog tour for Carol E Wyer’s new release ‘Little Girl Lost’.
The Official Book Blurb
A perfect family hiding disturbing secrets. A killer who wants the truth to be told.
A teacher goes missing under suspicious circumstances.
A millionaire is murdered at a local reservoir.
For Detective Robyn Carter, there’s no obvious link between the men. But as she starts to delve into the cases, her investigations lead her to Abigail, perfect wife and mother to beautiful little Izzy. What was Abigail’s connection to the victims? And why is she receiving threatening messages from an anonymous number?
But as Robyn starts to inch closer to finding the killer, Izzy is abducted.
Unless Robyn gets to the twisted individual in time, a little girl will die …
Still suffering from grief following the death of her lover, Detective Inspector Robyn Carter has been spending the past year working as a Private Detective at her cousin’s firm. The cases are small, meaningless, insurance fraud cases but they are what she needs to get her head back together.
Just as she is about to return to work she is asked to visit a woman who has contacted the firm to help her locate her missing husband. She is certain that he has just gone to Thailand so doesn’t want to contact the police, but she hasn’t heard from him in a while and something she finds in their home leads her to believe that all is not as should be. As Robyn begins to make enquiries at his school, she realises that there is far more at play here than a simple holiday..
Abigail is a young mother with a beautiful daughter and a seemingly perfect life. Her husband runs his own private jet company and she wants for nothing. But something is disturbing her sleep. Someone is determined to upset her idyllic lifestyle via a series of letters and emails hinting that her life may not be as perfect as she first thought.
As her tormentor’s threats and barbs escalate, Abigail feels like the walls are closing in around her. When her name comes up as part of Robyn’s investigations she knows it is only a matter of time before her secrets must be told.
And then her daughter is taken.
Oh. My. Word. I absolutely loved this book. What a great start to the series this is and I can already see that Robyn Carter is a character who has a lot of life in her and a good many stories to tell.
Now I have to be honest. The opening chapter of this book made me wonder just what it was I was letting myself in for. It is not an easy subject to consider but it is necessary as it informs the rest of the story. It wasn’t gratuitous in any way but with a theme of child abuse I wondered just what the tone of the rest of the book would be. I needn’t have worried. Yes this is a difficult subject to read about, especially as it is told from the point of view of the child who is abused but it is short and although important, does not overtake the story.
Robyn Carter is a complex character but I really did grow to like her. She has suffered immeasurable loss and it is impacting up on her in all the usual ways but it doesn’t dull the sharpness of her mind. She has a great relationship with her cousin and also her partner’s former wife and daughter and it is nice to see those personal relationships throughout as it humanises her and makes her more than her job.
The story is told from three perspectives. Firstly we follow Robyn through her investigation. Then we watch Abigail as she struggles with the threats that she has been receiving. Abigail was a harder character to judge and I found myself torn between feeling sympathy for her position but also being suspicious of her. She is being persecuted, no doubt about that, and it is easy to understand the paranoia she succumbs to, especially given her lack of sleep. But she is a woman with a secret, one that remains well hidden throughout. Just who is she and how does she fit in with Robyn’s investigations?
The story has a third perspective, the only one told in the first person, that of Alice the young girl who was abused at the start of the novel. While Robyn’s and Abigail’s stories are set in the present day, when we hear from Alice we are hearing about events which bring us to the position we are in today. Her story is harrowing, and she suffers every possible disadvantage throughout her formative years. It unfurls slowly and as it does, you are given cause to think about how different things could have been for her in her childhood had the adults in her life once shown her any true care.
The pacing throughout is just right, the chapters short and the flow between past and present worked extremely well. While there is a danger that this device could push you out of the novel, become jarring, it was the exact opposite here, driving me onward. It was one of those ‘just one more chapter before bed’ kind of reads. Not that it took me that long or indeed any bedtimes to read as it sucked me right in and I raced through it in a day, needing to know just what was happening. With the exception of Robyn, it is hard to trust anyone in this book. There are some real oddball supporting characters throughout the story and Carol Wyer sends the reader racing off down the wrong track on more than one occasion.
And the ending was top notch. A belter. the tension was palpable, the sense of jeopardy growing as was the dread and twisted inevitability of the story. But more than that, the final chapter left a real feeling of hope for, well, nearly all of the characters, but especially for Robyn.
Slightly twisted and with layer upon layer of mystery and subtle complexity, this is definitely a series I will be on the look out for going forward and Carol E Wyer has just bagged herself another big fan, jumping right onto my list of must buy authors. Can’t believe this was her first thriller.
A thrilling and chilling 5 stars.
My thanks to NetGalley and publishers Bookouture for the ARC of ‘Little Girl Lost’. It is available to buy now at the following links.
About the Author
As a child Carol Wyer was always moving, and relied on humour to fit in at new schools. A funny short story won her popularity, planting the seed of becoming a writer. Her career spans dry cleaning, running a language teaching company, and boxercise coaching. Now writing full-time, Carol has several books published by Safkhet and journalism in many magazines.
Carol won The People’s Book Prize Award for non-fiction (2015), and can sometimes be found performing her stand-up comedy routine Laugh While You Still Have Teeth.
Why not stop by one of the other fabulous blogs on the tour, including my book tour better half, Emma Mitchell over at Emma The Little Bookworm