Food writer, Estelle Forster, is famous for her ‘pure’ organic, made-from-scratch recipes and food plating on all social sites mainly Instagram and Twitter. She has her first cookbook coming out in a few days. She seems to have it all ; beauty, supportive boyfriend, fame, popularity, rags to riches, self made story and a new book. And then a Polaroid photo of a missing girl, Poppy, appears along with a note and she is stumped by the strangeness of it all. Estelle has no idea how the missing teen is connected to her. A call to the police and checking the various online posts hits her with a bang… Her past… Its back and along with it, her secrets, her shame, her childhood memories, and all she had thought, was over and done with..
To save Poppy’s life, she has to go back, back to where it all started.. Lilysands, a coastal town, where everyone appears good, warm and friendly, but are they??
Back to foster parents, Max and Autumn, who appear to be overjoyed to see her but do they really love her??
Back to Aiden her first love whom she has forgotten but has she really??
Back to Alice, her foster sister who apparently committed suicide but had she??
Too many questions and too little time to discover all the truths along with saving Poppy.
Tracy Buchanan writes well, the story starts at a good pace, there is a right amount of suspense in the right areas. The story starts with a bang but there is something missing to make it a complete thriller. Estelle, as the main character is strong but appears to be a bit of a wimp, in certain portions, unsure and insecure. She herself is going through an eating disorder but that is not dealt properly, with sensitivity. The background is sketchy and how Estelle got help for it, is explained vaguely in two lines.
There are bits and pieces in this book which feel incomplete, lots of things are not explained properly, just like the title. The connection between the main character and love interest is lukewarm. There is a line in the book, where the mystery person who sends the photos and messages, thinks that he/she would like to strangle the main character, such is the level of hate… But that doesn’t come forth in subsequent pages and explanations. Like any thriller, the last pages are supposed to be stormy but this feels like a drizzle. The reason for all this mystery is good but it isn’t put forth like a thriller, it comes out like a family saga, and that, my friends, is my main gripe. If a book is tagged – some truths set you free and others destroy, it better deliver with mind blowing writing. I should be reading this book with bated breath, it should have been my last breath before knowing the ending. But sadly, it isn’t. A tighter narrative would have helped this book..
But in saying all this, i still liked Tracy’s plot line, the story, the mystery, the pace at which it read, a flawed main character, hunky rock climbing love interest, a seaside town with its own politics, each character with his/her own secrets..
Would I read Tracy’s books? – yes
Would I believe what the tag line said? – maybe
Would I expect it to be a dark adrenaline filled thriller – definitely not
Its a fun read, enjoyable but forgettable..
I received an ARC from NetGalley and publisher Avon Books UK and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.
My rating : 3.5 stars
About the Author
Tracy Buchanan lives in Buckinghamshire with her husband, their little girl and their one-eyed Jack Russell. Tracy travelled extensively while working as a travel magazine editor, and has always been drawn to the sea after spending her childhood holidays on the south coast visiting family, a fascination that inspires her writing. She now dedicates her time to writing and procrastinating on Twitter.
A girl has gone missing. You’ve never met her, but you’re to blame.
Food writer Estelle Forster has the perfect life. And with her first book on the way, it’s about to get even better.When Estelle hears about Poppy O’Farrell’s disappearance, she assumes the girl has simply run away. But Estelle’s world crumbles when she’s sent a photo of Poppy, along with a terrifying note: I’m watching you. I know everything about you.
Estelle has no idea who’s threatening her, or how she’s connected to the missing teen, but she thinks the answers lie in the coastal town she once called home, and the past she hoped was long behind her.Estelle knows she must do everything to find Poppy. But how far will she go to hide the truth – that her perfect life was the perfect lie?
Publication date : 12th June 2017
Publisher : Avon
Language : English
Available on Amazon
Read it as a mystery beach read