Friday 14 December 2018

Then She Was Gone By Lisa Jewell Book Review

I've posted quite a few book reviews recently, the latest being The Wife Between Us and One Day In December, but it's time for another already! I just can't stop reading at the moment! I'm getting through so many books, it's actually becoming problem as I think we're going to run out of space soon 🙊
Then She Was Gone By Lisa Jewell
She was fifteen, her mother's golden girl. She had her whole life ahead of her. And then, in the blink of an eye, Ellie was gone. Ten years on, Laurel has never given up hope of finding Ellie. And then she meets a charming and charismatic stranger who sweeps her off her feet. But what really takes her breath away is when she meets his nine-year old daughter. Because his daughter is the image of Ellie. Now all of those unanswered questions that have haunted Laurel come flooding back. What really happened to Ellie? And who still has secrets to hide?

My review

This had been on my list for a while so I was thrilled to find it when we were in Manchester recently. It was a book I'd heard great things about so once we were back, I ran myself a hot bubble bath and got stuck in. The first thing I really liked about this book is how we were thrown straight in and within a few chapters Ellie goes missing. Because of that it might seem like we don't get much backstory but as the story unfolds, we do actually start to find out more and more about Ellie and what might have happened and this happens by Lisa taking us back in time. There are flashbacks to when Ellie was at school, planning for her GCSE's, taking on a tutor, living her normal life and that's when we get little drips here and there that really start to grow and plant this story in your mind of what might have happened. It's a really good mix of past and present throughout.

Whilst we do get flashbacks throughout the whole book, at no point did I find it confusing. Lisa has written it so well that it all just flows, and each chapter goes seamlessly into the next one regardless of if we're now being thrown back to the present day or switching to a different character, which did happen more towards the end of the book. A lot of the story is from Laurel's perspective (Ellie's mum) and we find her while she's trying to rebuild her life after Ellie's disappearance. She meets a new man Floyd and she tries to repair her relationship with her other children but as her new life begins, a few strange things happen that make her re-think Ellie's disappearance and how the person responsible might have been closer to home than anyone originally realised. 

Whilst this wasn't a book that makes it obvious who the culprit is going to be, I did have my suspicions once I got a couple of chapters in. That being said, I still had no idea where it was going to go and I ended up being seriously surprised at the end when we get the big reveal. It's such an intricate story and each character has so many different sides to them so each time you think you have something figured out, it soon changes again. From the very start I was hooked and whilst there's been a lot of books like that for me recently, there was something different about this. I just felt compelled to keep reading every time I opened it up and I was willing for Laurel to finally figure everything out and get justice for her daughter. The ending I actually found really emotional and it was hard not to be affected by the story and the characters because sadly things like this do happen and people do just go missing so it felt very real.

This is the first book I've read from Lisa Jewell but it definitely won't be the last. I can totally see why people love her books so much as this one had me right from the start and continued to impress right to the very end.

Have you read any books from Lisa Jewell?

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