I had high hopes for this book but all of them were dashed. There is so much that is wrong with this book though the premise is not one of them. On the surface, a story about a 12-year old girl who disappears without a trace only to return four years later is one that is full of promise. Unfortunately, every promise made in this book is broken, thrown to the ground and trampled on. Why make a huge point of the girl lying to the father early on when it means absolutely nothing? Why would the police arrest a man who abducted and abused a girl for four years and let him go within 24 hours? Why would a woman condemn her brother-in-law for lying on one page only to run to his defense three pages later? And why on earth would any father agree to return his sixteen year old daughter to the man who abducted her??? There is not one sympathetic character in this book and not one who can be trusted. What a waste of time. Ugh.
This book centers around a parents' worst nightmare - the mysterious disappearance of their daughter. Fast forward four years after the disappearance of their twelve year old daughter Caitlin, Tom and Abby Stuart are still mourning the "death" of their daughter. Their once strong marriage is now fractured and while Tom holds out hope that Caitlin is still alive, Abby has given up all hope. When Caitlin resurfaces, Tom is driven to uncover who took his daughter and the events of the last four years. I enjoyed the book a lot and found it a compelling read. A few things disturbed me about the book, such as the portrayal of the young girl's "feelings" towards the man who abducted her. A little too creepy and not necessarily realistic depiction of a father's feelings towards his daughter's abductor and rapist.
Tom and Abby Stuart seem to be a couple with the perfect life until their wonderful 12-year old daughter, Caitlin, disappears without a trace. The only witness to Caitlins disappearance is the family dog. Abby finds solace at church, Tom endures by tracking every lead and keeping their daughters story out there. Their marriage starts to fall apart as they are both pulled in different directions. Abby needs closure and Tom needs to keep hope alive.
Four years later their world is rocked again when Caitlin is found alive..
I think the book cover synopsis gives away too much of the story and loses some of the suspense. That being said it is a gripping story. The psychological part of the story is very compelling as all three main characters deal with serious issues. Losing a child is devastating enough but having them return after time, while fantastic, trying to acclimate together again can be overwhelming.
The entire story is told from Toms point of view and his pain, agony, fear, mistrust, sadness and grief are all poured out on these pages. As his childhood memories are revealed you feel even more of these emotions. At times I thought her was hallucinating visions of his daughter, his mind trying to cope. Maybe because I was taking this journey so closely with Tom I found myself really not liking Abby and her relationship with her pastor really upset me.
This author has a voice I will continue to watch. This is a smart novel with keen insight. There are many layers in this story that add to the story making it different from other stories with a similar premise. Parents will hug their kids tight after reading this all too real nightmare.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from New American Library. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 : Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
This book is from the point of view of a middle aged man. I have never read a story from this prospective and I must say that the point of view in this story was fascinating. When a child goes missing normally you would look to the mother or possibly the child's point of view. It was a quick read and the story flows very easily. I really enjoyed getting out of my comfort zone and reading this book.
I wasn't going to review this book HOWEVER I can see there is mixed feelings about the storyline
It did keep my interest and I finished it in one day but the last few chapters I thought were ridiculous, there was just too much wrong with what happened when Catlin came home and most of it I thought is unbelievable BUT you have to realize--it is just a story in a book, I would sure hope that it would never happen in a real situation
So I give it 3 stars just because it will keep your interest