Top critical review
Powerful, disturbing and haunting tale of abuse and revenge
5 July 2018
Wow – this certainly was a powerful, disturbing and haunting tale of abuse and revenge! Apparently some scenes in the book were inspired by real police investigations, and Hodge has obviously done her homework, not holding back when describing the full horror of unspeakable acts committed to the children in this story. As a warning to the faint hearted: some of the scenes in this book are very explicit and contain graphic descriptions of child sexual and psychological abuse that will definitely disturb some readers. I listened to the audio version, and felt that some of the images it evoked were upsetting and sickening – even more so to know that these events are not pure fiction and are based on real life events. I shuddered many times when exposed to the full horror of some of the children’s ordeal, and must admit that I found the revenge part not nearly as satisfying as I had hoped. How can such terrible acts ever be truly avenged?
If you like dark and disturbing thrillers that contain a certain element of conspiracy theory on a larger scale, and are able to stomach the more explicit details, then this is the right book for you! I found some of the political details the story is based on quite intriguing, and it certainly challenged my trust in law enforcement and democracy as a whole, even though some of Mitchell’s theories seemed a bit over the top. I applaud the author for tackling such a difficult and emotionally charged topic and weaving it into a multi-layered and gripping thriller. Whilst it was more a tale of seeking justice and revenge than a psychological thriller, it made for a captivating read and I am looking forward to reading more from this author in future.