“A missing girl. Two sides, one truth”
Genre: Mystery and thriler
Similar to: Every other “domestic thriller” with a blue cover and yellow writing (why this combination?)
Could be enjoyed by: Fans of blue books with yellow titles
Publication date: 26th July 2018
So it seems that domestic thrillers are fast becoming a guilty pleasure of mine. Yes, they’re genre so essentially follow a tried and tested formula but when they’re well written they’re utterly addictive – and luckily for me, Now You See Her is completely, totally unputdownable. In fact, I read it in one sitting (I say read – guiltily consumed it when I should have been working is more accurate). Therefore, I’m marking it as a bathtub book – as in, run a bath and be prepared not to move for the next three hours ☺.
The story focuses on Charlotte, a busy mum of three kids. Two weeks ago was the day of the school fete, when she agreed to look after her hyper-protective friend Harriet’s little girl along with her own children. Harriet’s daughter goes missing and Charlotte is beside herself – but is she actually guilty of negligence or is there something else going on? The book alternates between the events of two weeks ago, Harriet’s childhood and the present day and as it progresses we are slowly drip fed information about what has really happened. And seriously – a lot of shit has gone down.
I LOVED the way that Now You See Her was written. Heidi Perks did a fantastic job of writing such well-rounded, believable characters and built the tension up through the narrative brilliantly. I thought that the reactions of all of the characters was utterly believable and the sense of dread and panic was palpable. I also liked the way that the novel alternated between then and now – I’m not always a fan of a time slip but this one was easy to follow and didn’t require an idetic memory to establish whereabouts in the timeframe each chapter was taking place. In a lot of ways the book reminded me of a less complex Big Little Lies, but faster paced and with more drama. High praise indeed!
I really empathised with Charlotte’s character. She wasn’t perfect but she seemed very real – just an ordinary busy mum trying to keep all of her plates spinning. As the novel progressed and we found out more about Harriet she went from being a slightly annoying, one dimensional woman (the classic no-fun mum) to a complex, ambiguous individual with a disturbing past and an even more disturbing present. I really liked how the characters were played off against each other as it added to the drama and the twist at the end made me want to stand up and cheer.
I wasn’t a huge fan of the “now it’s a year later let’s see how everyone’s getting on” final chapter as it felt a bit flat after all of the drama – but that’s only a minor criticism.
Overall I thought that Now You See Her was a great novel – not hugely original but completely engrossing and would make a fab beach read.
Rating: Four “I’m on my way – honestly’s!” out of five
A total page turner of a novel – a great holiday book. Just don’t start reading it if you have immediate plans.
Please note that I read this book for free via Netgalley in exchange for an unbiased review. Thanks Netgalley!