Published by Twenty7 on 28 January 2016 and available here
Her daughter missing, her childhood sweetheart the only suspect: a gripping and suspenseful debut thriller
For four long years, journalist Morgan Vine has campaigned for the release of her childhood sweetheart Danny Kilcannon – convicted, on dubious evidence, of murdering his 14 year-old stepdaughter.
When a key witness recants, Danny is released from prison. With nowhere else to go, he relies on single mum Morgan and her teenage daughter, Lissa.
But then Lissa goes missing.
With her own child now at risk, Morgan must re-think all she knows about her old flame – ‘the one that got away’. As the media storm around the mysterious disappearance intensifies and shocking revelations emerge, she is forced to confront the ultimate question: who can we trust…?
Introducing Morgan Vine, Without Trace is Simon Booker’s gripping debut thriller.
This book seriously messes with your head. Did he do it? Didn’t he do it? Yes Danny must be guilty. Maybe he isn’t! Simon Booker’s Without Trace is the kind of book I adore. It sends your head in a spin!
We follow Morgan Vine, journalist, prison helper and mother to Lissa. Her long term friend and ex-boyfriend, Danny is accused of killing his teenage daughter and being responsible for the disappearance of his wife. Everyone believes Danny is guilty of murder. Morgan campaigns on his behalf and eventually Danny’s sentence is quashed. On his release, Danny gets in touch with Morgan and Lissa. Soon Lissa vanishes and Morgan is bereft searching for her daughter. Where is Lissa? Why would she go missing? Morgan is forced to start questioning her faith in Danny. Did Danny kill his family? Are the public right to think Danny got away with murder? What really happened to his wife and daughter?
There is a delicious theme of trust throughout the book. Who can we trust in this day and age? We live in an age, where we don’t trust politicians, estate agents, teachers and all the establishments we grew up with. We are sceptics. Booker exploits this facet of modern day living. Morgan Vine is brilliant. Initially she seems a bit too trusting. It makes sense thought, that she would trust a long term friend and believe the best of him. She learns over the course of the book to think about who she shares information with. She is left increasingly isolated. Who can Morgan turn to?
I had loads of fun reading this. Without Trace is an excellent thriller, with a bewitching lead in Morgan. It is full of enough twists and turns to send you doolally. I seriously could not work out what was going on and who to trust! Thankfully the ending tied up all the loose ends perfectly.