Then She Was Gone – book review

The She Was Gone

One of the biggest fears of any parent is child abduction. In Lisa Jewell’s newest book. “Then She Was Gone,” we get to experience the heartbreak and devastation this crime can bring upon a family.

Ellie Mack was a golden child: pretty, smart, loving and happy. One day, at the age of 15, she disappears on her way to the library. Her parents, Laurel and Paul, are frantic, convinced that she was taken, but the police are thinking that maybe she is just another runaway.

No leads are found and no one reported seeing anything unusual that day, and pretty soon the case goes cold. As the years start to pass slowly with no sign of Ellie, sadness and frustration take their toll. Family relationships are frayed and eventually broken. Her parents and siblings drift apart, at times trying to forget and go on with their lives, but also hoping that one day Ellie will be found.

Laurel may be the one who finds it the hardest to move forward; she does not want to let go of the fantasy that her daughter will return to her safe and sound. One day, a little girl comes into her life who so reminds her of her daughter. The more time she spends with her, the more convinced she is that young Poppy is almost a clone of her daughter. Other people start to notice it as well. But how could Poppy and Ellie be connected? After all, there has been no sign of her daughter for 10 years.

Told from the viewpoint of each main character, the book explores the psychological turmoil that the victims and their perpetrator experience. The pain is heartfelt, but then so is the reasoning of the kidnapper. You will get to know each character’s story and get a feel for who they are and what motivates them.

Born and raised in north London, Lisa Jewell is the author of 12 bestselling novels. She lives in Swiss Cottage, a district in the London borough of Camden in England, with her husband and two daughters. To find out more about her and her other books, go to http://www.fantasticfiction.com/j/lisa-jewell/.

Written for The Woodbridge Magazine (UK)

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