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Child Taken

Monthly Round Up: May 2017

Where did May go?! I’ve managed to read a few really good books this month, although two of the reviews aren’t live yet due to them being part of a forthcoming blog tour. Here  is my month in books:

Books I’ve Read

Dead Letters by Caite Dolan-Leach

This tale of a sister investigating the disappearance/death of her twin wasn’t the thriller I hoped it was going to be but was still an enjoyable and entertaining read.



The Sixth Victim by Tessa Harris

A great first book in a new series featuring the psychic medium Constance Piper. Set against the backdrop of 1888 Whitechapel, during the reign of terror of Jack the Ripper, Constance is tasked to discover the whereabouts of a missing woman.

51bS5O6yIKLWhen I Wake Up by Jessica Jarlvi

This debut novel was not what I expected but was, nevertheless, an intriguing tale of infatuation and revenge. Full review will follow as part of the book’s Blog Tour.

Child Taken by Darren Young

When a child disappears from a beach, has she drowned or has she been abducted? The child’s mother knows that she has been taken but no one will listen to her. An excellent debut from Darren Young.


51zeLbgjVpLOn Copper Street by Chris Nickson

The fifth of the Tom Harper series set in Victorian Leeds has countless murders and a seemingly unprovoked acid attack. A great read for any fans of historical crime fiction.


51ekD0+0VCLDay of the Dead by Mark Roberts

When a paedophile is found brutally murdered in Liverpool, it looks as though the escaped killer known as Vindici has struck again. Is it him or is a copycat emulating the ‘work’ of their idol? This is the third in the DCI Eve Clay series – a full review will follow as part of the blog tour.

Books I’ve Acquired


Years ago, Fortune gave up on his daughter, Sophie, after a troubled adolescence. Now she’s gone missing, vanished without trace. And after weeks of investigation, the police have given up on her, too.

Driven by guilt, and a determination to atone for his failures as a father, he takes on the search himself. He soon finds that his daughter had been living in fear of a vicious online troll who seemed to know far too much about her. Could Sophie’s disappearance be linked to this unknown predator? Fortune is about to discover that monsters which live online don’t always stay there…




The young woman standing on Lottie’s step was a stranger. She was clutching the hand of a young boy. ‘Help me,’ she said to Lottie. ‘Please help me.’

One Monday morning, the body of a young pregnant woman is found. The same day, a mother and her son visit the house of Detective Lottie Parker, begging for help to find a lost friend.

Could this be the same girl?

When a second victim is discovered by the same man, with the murder bearing all the same hallmarks as the first, Lottie needs to work fast to discover how else the two were linked. Then two more girls go missing.

Detective Lottie Parker is a woman on the edge, haunted by her tragic past and struggling to keep her family together through difficult times. Can she fight her own demons and catch the killer before he claims another victim?



What do you do if you witness a murder…but no-one believes you?
When Kate sees a horrific murder streamed live on her laptop, she calls the police in a state of shock. But when they arrive, the video has disappeared – and she can’t prove anything. Desperate to be believed, Kate tries to find out who the girl in the video could be – and who her killer is.
Freddie and Nas are working on a missing persons case, but tensions in the police force are running high and time is ticking. When Kate contacts them, they are the only ones to listen and they start to wonder – are the two cases connected?
Dark, gripping, and flawlessly paced, Trust Me is the brilliant third novel in the hugely popular social media murderer series.

I’m currently reading Trust Me and am looking forward to reading the latest of Mark Billingham’s Tom Thorne series.

Happy reading!


Child Taken by Darren Young

It’s every mum’s worst nightmare. On a hot, summer’s day, two-year-old Jessica Preston vanishes from the beach. Although her mother, Sandra, knows she has been abducted, the police are less than convinced, preferring to think that she has drowned. Twenty years later, Sandra still clings on to the hope that her daughter will be found, and her faith is renewed when she is approached by a journalist, offering to get her story back out into the public domain. When the journalist uncovers a huge cover-up, she realises that someone will stop at nothing to keep the secret of Jessica Preston hidden for ever.

You would not think that this is a debut novel, such is the storytelling and the characterisation. I was drawn in from the start as the retelling of the story starts from the perspective of Sandra and the new ‘father’ of the taken child. Instantly, I felt nothing but despair and sadness for Sandra, and admired her tenacity for never toeing the party line with regards to the whereabouts of her daughter. I willed her to, one day, get the news that she had been longing for – the discovery that her daughter had, indeed, not drowned. The new ‘father’, however, I could not believe how quick he was to accept the child that his wife had brought home.

I also instantly warmed to Laura, the journalist intent on finding out the truth, despite the danger she was putting herself in. Although I did, at times, wish that she had the sense to tell someone about the case, especially when her life begins to be threatened, this would have meant that the terrifying chase near the end of the book would probably not have happened. Although I can’t detail this chase in case I give away some spoilers, it is safe to say that this is one of the most terrifying parts of the book that had me on the edge of my seat!

Like most books of this genre, we are growing accustomed to a twist that completely wrong-foots you. As a result, I did find myself anticipating what the twist would be and I was surprised when I did have it worked out! This did not affect my enjoyment of the book, in any way, however – if anything, it gave me more to think about as I was reading.

This is a fantastic debut and I look forward to following the rest of Darren Young’s career.

With thanks to RedDoor Publishing for my copy of the book.

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