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Then She Vanishes: The gripping new psychological thriller that will keep you hooked to the very last page Paperback – 20 August 2019
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Now, one is missing.
On a summer's night in 1994, sixteen-year-old Flora Powell vanished from her sleepy seaside town. She left no trace - only heartache for her mother and her sister, Heather.
And one is a murderer.
Twenty-five years later, Heather walks into a stranger's house. There, the loving wife and doting new mother kills two people in cold blood.
So only one remains . . .
Jess is sent to report on the case that shocked the hometown she left behind. But it's anything but business to her. She was like a sister to the Powell girls, until the summer that tore them all apart.
Can Jess find the key to both their mysteries? Or will her search reveal a darker side to the place she grew up - and put her in danger?
Frequently bought together
A gripping page turner (Jane Fallon, bestselling author of Faking Friends)
Lifts the stone on a cold case disappearance and asks chilling questions about friendship, loyalty, love and obsession. It's twisty, tense and brimming with atmosphere. I raced to the end (Gilly Macmillan, author of The Nanny)
Praise for Claire Douglas (-)
Thrillingly tense and twisty (B A Paris bestselling author of Behind Closed Doors)
Stunning . . . with a killer twist (Closer)
Perfect for fans of The Girl on the Train (Marie Claire)
A page-turning slow burn (Cara Hunter bestselling author of Close to Home)
Will give you chills (Sunday Mirror)
An addictive read that will leave you on the edge of your seat (Sun)
Will have you tearing through the pages (Paula Daly bestselling author of The Mistake I Made)
Combines shocking twists effortlessly with sensitive explorations of family dynamics (Gillian McAllister bestselling author of Anything You Do Say)
Superb plotting. I could hardly catch my breath between twists (Jenny Blackhurst bestselling author of Before I Let You In)
As soon as I finished the first page, I knew I wouldn't be able to put this down (Good Housekeeping)
Unforgettably dark and complex (Woman & Home)
Kept me up last night. Scary. Twisty. All too believable (Jane Corry bestselling author of My Husband's Wife)
Kept me guessing right up to the thrilling finale (Emma Curtis bestselling author of One Little Mistake)
Absorbing and chilling (Karen Perry bestselling author of Girl Unknown)
It's impossible to guess the shocking ending (Saga)
A fab and twisty page-turner (Lucy Clarke bestselling author of Last Seen)
So twisty, turning and grippy (Gilly Macmillan bestselling author of What She Knew)
- Publisher : Michael Joseph; 1st edition (20 August 2019)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 448 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0718187911
- ISBN-13 : 978-0718187910
- Dimensions : 15.5 x 3.2 x 23.2 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: 659,692 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from Australia
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This is the story of 2 best friends.. well they were when they were kids in their small seaside town. Heather and Jess were joined at the hip as kids.. until Heathers sister Flora disappeared one night and never came home. They both have secrets from that night and their friendship suffered. 18 years later Jess is a reporter and is drawn back to the town she grew up in when Heather is accused of a horrid crime. What would make her former best friend do what she has been accused of? jess is determined to find out, and in the process finally find out what happened to Flora all those years ago. A wonderful story of friendship, family, first love and secrets.
Thanks to a NetGalley and Penguin UK, Michael Joseph for my advanced copy of this book to read. all opinions are my own and are in no way biased.
Told from the different character's point of view, eg. some chapters from Jess, some Margot etc.
I really liked the structure of this book. This really was a cracking read. One of those you can't wait to get back to when you've been working, or when you wake up in the morning.
A fabulous book which I read eagerly all the way through. Excellent dialogue, and intriguing trying to decipher all the possible clues. A fantastic crime thriller, and one of the best I've read recently.
Claire Douglas is definitely on my must read authors list and this was another great twisty book.
For a time in her teenage years, Jess was embraced into her friend Heather’s family. But things feel apart when Heather’s older sister disappeared after a day out. Now Jess is a reporter and is covering a shocking shooting, of which Heather is a suspect.
It did take me a little to get into this book but there was always something beneath the surface to keep my interest up. I did like Jess as a character and felt for her as she fought her desire for a story balanced with sympathy for her old friend’s mother.
There are past and present chapters and had no trouble following the time frames. I must admit this book had me guessing the whole time, right to the very end.
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a copy to read.
Top reviews from other countries
Fast forward twenty-five years and as if lightning strikes twice, their sleepy seaside town is rocked again when tragedy hits and Heather tries to take her own life after taking the lives of two other people in cold blood – a loving, doting mother. The community are shell socked and can’t make sense of it.
Jess, now a reporter is sent back to her hometown to report on the case. What if she could solve both mysteries…?
Or could she delve into the dark, dangerous side of her hometown revealing secrets and lies that are better left buried…?
Claire Douglas has done it again! Fast becoming one of my favourite authors in this genre, has written another brilliantly executed story creating scenes in my mind like a showreel. This was an enthralling read, that kept me glued to the edge of my seat. With twists and turns as the story unravels and authentic, relatable characters that allowed the plot to flow – Ms Douglas makes it look effortless! Just when I thought I had it all figured out something else would be revealed…Absolute brilliance!
I would highly recommend!
Jess has nothing in her life apart from her job and her boyfriend. No family to support her, no children of her own. So when she reconnects with Heather and her mother she feels she has rediscovered the family she has been missing for so long. Therefore she feels it is her responsibility to get to the bottom of the accusations against her friend.
I really enjoyed this book. I've read all of Claire's previous novels and have always found them to be completely absorbing. So much so you never feel the need to try and crack the case yourself, always just trapped between those lines as the story unravels.
The only slight downside I found with this is that I felt I had missed something for a bit. There were a few mentions towards Jess's previous life in London before she moved back to her home town and I felt we never quite got to the bottom of what had happened. I checked several times to see if I had missed a book and this was a follow up but I'm pretty certain it isn't. For that reason I gave this book 4 stars . Maybe there will be a prequel to come, or maybe I brushed over any conclusion to that side of the story and it's my fault, I'm not sure. But I just found that slight element a little confusing and it took my full attention off of the plot for a while. Well worth a read as usual.
Jess used to be best friends with Heather but they had a falling out when they were teenagers. I really enjoyed the flashbacks when they still were best friends, before Heather’s sister Flora went missing. But what was it that tore their friendship apart? What is Jess feeling guilty about, what secret has she kept all these years? It kept playing on my mind, did it have anything to do with Flora’s disappearance? The author is in no hurry to tell but I loved speculating about what was covered up for so many years.
I came to know Heather as someone with good intentions, someone kind and caring and a good daughter to her mother, a stickler at following the rules as opposed to her big sister Flora who she adored, so her act of murdering two people seemed way out of character. Yet nothing is ever straightforward in Claire Douglas’s books and I have come to expect those twists and as always, I enjoyed many of them in this novel. One of them in particular came as a real shock, it was tragic and showed a dark side of life that I hadn’t counted on.
The different plotlines of the past and the present are in some way connected and the author brings everything brilliantly together. There was only one twist that I expected from early on and it’s a big one so I was hoping someone – if not Jess, the police perhaps – would see the clue for what it was but no, the police was quite absent in the story and no help at all. I had to wait a little too long for it to come out so that was one big omg-moment I missed but that’s the only thing I can complain about and if I hadn’t know I’d have given it a star more. If you want clever twists and turns this is an author you need to read for sure.
Then She Vanishes is quite a brilliant whydunnit against an intriguing backdrop of family and friendship.
I was slightly put off by the blurb, having just read a few books that involved missing children, however I am glad that I went for it anyway (wasn't really ever in doubt that I would read it regardless, but it made me less excited) However, it is totally not what you expect and instead is about family, friendship, morality, youth, innocence and community. Margot is my favourite character within the novel a mother who loves and needs to love! It is a twisty, turning page turner, that keeps you guessing. It has heart and punch!