Hold My Hand by M. J. Ford

My review

The story goes thus, a young Josie, at a circus, sees a clown leading away a young boy in a red t-shirt, she becomes the only witness to this kidnapping. Now 30years later, Josie/ Jo is a cop and the body/skeleton of a child is found by the builders. A couple of days later, another boy is led away by a man in a clown mask. Another kidnapping.

Who is the clown in the first kidnapping?? Are these copy-cat kidnappers/murderers?? Are the two men the same or are the kidnappings just opportunistic coincidences?? Are they accomplices or master-protégé combination??

All these and more are answered in the police-procedural psychological thriller, Hold my Hand by the author M. J. Ford. A debut written so well is astonishing. There is a right amount of jadedness in Jo along with a burning desire for justice. The secondary characters also seem to prop and uphold the story well.

I liked the main character Jo, she was as flawed as it comes. I loved her gut instinct at work, but those instincts somehow didn’t work in her personal life. I loved her professionalism towards co-workers, but somehow, her courteous manners were not extended to family. I loved her capabilities as a cop, but sadly enough they don’t extend to her as a woman. As a cop, she knew where she was going, as a woman, she dithered. But then again, who amongst us, isn’t like this??

I think the author M. J. Ford will grow on me, in the next few books. If I seived away Jo’s personal life along with her closed-up weird attitude, the parts which remained read well. It was fast-paced with a lot of clues. The investigative journey was a winding, twisty road, with dead ends, false accused, ramblings of a child, along with the thoughts of a retired now mildly alcoholic policeman, who worked on the first kidnapping.

I liked Jo, the policewoman, she had courage in her convictions. Jo the woman didn’t connect with me, she was too within herself. On the whole, a thrilling police procedural with a realistic main character, written in a fast pace, with a pragmatic hand by debut author M. J. Ford. A great way to spend the Saturday afternoon.

P.S. I loved the cover too; it was heartbreakingly innocent.

I received an ARC from NetGalley and publisher Avon Books UK, and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

My rating : 4 stars

About the Author

M. J. Ford is a writer and an editor at Working Partners, where he works on projects across the age groups. He loves thrillers, historical and fantasy titles. Hold My Hand is his debut novel.

Book blurb

A horrible vanishing act…

When a young Josie Masters sees a boy wearing a red football shirt, Dylan Jones, being taken by a clown at a carnival, she tries to alert the crowds. But it’s too late. Dylan has disappeared…

Thirty years later, Josie is working as a police officer in Bath. The remains of the body of a child have been found – complete with tatters of a torn red football shirt. Is it the boy she saw vanish in the clutches of the clown? Or is it someone else altogether?

And then another child disappears…

Product Details

Publication date : 8th March, 2018

Publisher : Avon Books UK

Language : English

Available on Amazon

A Police Procedural thriller

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