Published: April 2021
Publisher: HarperCollins UK
My Rating: 🦋🦋🦋🦋/5 stars
Annie and David Crayce are the perfect couple. They have a a wonderful marriage and three beautiful children as well as a thriving family business. Life is great, but then one day everything changes. After DNA is found that links David to a murder which was committed twenty years ago, the case is reopened. But the police are not the only ones doing the investigating, so is Annie and when it comes to finding the truth, it all comes down to a few lost hours so many years ago.
Imagine having the perfect husband, the perfect family, the perfect life, a thriving family business and then one day the rug gets pulled out from under you.
This slow-burn thriller is not just about a young girl who was murdered, there is a lot of focus on family bonds. The Crayce family is quite a close knit one so when David is accused of murder this completely shakes everyone. Annie who thought she knew everything about David, starts questioning not only her husband, but also herself.
This was so much more than the past coming back to haunt them; it was apparently coming back to destroy them.
The reader is also kept guessing as there is more than just one suspect in the story. The chapters alternate between 2019 (present day) and 1999 when Karen, the young girl was murdered. Which means you get some insight into the background of the characters.
Natalie the detective has her own past issues to deal with. Having gotten out of an abusive relationship with her ex-husband who was also in the army, it’s as if she is letting that cloud her judgment when it comes to the case as David is an ex-military veteran with a history of PTSD. She is determined to prove that he is guilty.
It is a cold case that took place 20 years ago so a lot of the evidence is circumstantial and even with the DNA link, I wondered how they would be able to prove that David actually murdered Karen with such limited information.
One thing I found very interesting is how forgiving everyone is about the infidelity in their relationships. As if it wasn’t really a big deal and that most men cheat 🤨 another thing to note is the constant mention of how ‘friendly’ Karen was when she was alive and how some people in the book thought that’s what made her an easy target. In short there is victim-blaming. It shows you the type of mentality people had about victims of sexual assault and murder especially more than 20 years ago. Although things are changing, there are still some who think this way.
There is a lot of detail which adds to the slow-burn, but in the end we see how it helps to tie everything together. You can tell Susan Lewis is not new to the writing scene and this thriller will keep you guessing until the end.
Disclaimer: I was sent this free copy for review by Jonathan Ball Publishers. This does not influence my review or rating in any way. All views and opinions expressed are my own.