The Missing is all about family relationships gone wrong and in this story they have done so in spectacular manner. 15 year old Billy has been missing for six months leaving Dad Mark, Mum Claire and older brother Jake to wonder what has happened to him.
The family is further complicated by, Kira, Jake’s girlfriend, who lives with them. Kira has suffered abuse in the past and though Claire tries to get close to her Kira resists.
The story opens six months after Billy disappeared with a new Police Appeal to attempt to find some answers.
The story is difficult to outline other than to say that Claire is just about at the end of her tolerance and needs to know the truth good or bad. Disagreements are rife and in this volatile family atmosphere secrets begin to emerge; Billy’s true character, Kira and Jake’s relationship, the suspicion that Mark is having an affair.
Through it all Claire relies on her good friend, Liz, a fabulous character, worth her weight in gold to this book. Liz is loud and brash and often says the wrong thing, but she is a solid friend. Some of her comments about her estranged husband Lloyd are priceless.
The ending twist took me by surprise, the author did a good job of distraction with the various other events in the story.
At the end of the book is an author’s note. She talks about the fugue state that Claire suffers and seems to have done her research well as to what happens with that phenomena in real life. She does admit she stretches that a bit to fit the plot of the book which is very honest but I must say, even before I read that end note I felt it had been overdone and didn’t help the flow of the story.
However, it is an enjoyable read. I look forward to more by this author.