Happy Friday! The end of another week where nothing much has happened yet I’m still happy to have the weekend ahead of me. I have a fun couple of days planned. I’m babysitting my nephew Saturday evening and then we’re having a family day at the Safari Park on Sunday. Needless to say, I’m pretty excited.
Thank you to @bookouture and @kerrywk for this advanced copy of The Child in the Photo in return for an honest review. The Child in the Photo is due to be published on 14th June 2021 and you can get a copy here.
Hope collects her post and finds a letter that has been pushed through her door with just her name written on the envelope. Inside she finds an article from thirty years ago about a baby called Jane that was stolen from the back of a car. The photograph of Jane is what is most striking; she has a scar on her ear that is exactly the same as hers. Hope instantly starts to question if she is in fact Jane.
This isn’t something that Hope can just dismiss and therefore starts to dig around for more details. New people come into her life but she doesn’t know if she can trust them. Worst of all, she doesn’t know if she can trust the woman that has raised her or anything that she thinks she knows about her life to date.
General Thoughts 🤔
When I started this book I thought that I knew exactly where it was going to end up but then questioned myself. Surely not?! Otherwise the whole storyline is given away in the first handful of chapters. Sure enough, there were plenty of curveballs and jaw dropping revelations to follow that I wasn’t expecting. I found this book impossible to put down as just when I thought all of the secrets simply had to be out in the open, something else would happen.
I spent a small amount of time questioning whether some of the things in the story would even be possible. My mind starting going deep into the technicalities and had me wondering how on earth someone could get away with crimes of this nature. In hindsight I don’t actually think it matters all that much. It made for a fantastic story either way.
Everyone needs a friend like Stephen in their life. I fell in love with him right from the start. He was always there for Hope (even when he didn’t want to be) but he wasn’t only a strong pillar there to hold Hope up; quite literally at times. He had his own vulnerabilities and troubles to contend with.
The character I empathised with the most was Hope’s mother. I can’t imagine the sinking feeling in her stomach that she must have felt when Hope asked her about baby Jane and showed her the article. I suspect that she often thought that the day may come, but after so many years of raising a happy family, it must have been devastating to her all the same. People will do a lot of things when they’re desperate, but is it still wrong if they believed that their intentions were good at the time? I pondered over this a lot.
Writing Style ✍️
The whole book is written in first person from Hope’s point of view which I enjoyed. I do like when books are told from multiple POVs as I think it allows the reader to gain extra insight into the plot and the characters, however I don’t think it was necessary for this story. Everything that happened centred around Hope so I thought it was appropriate that it was written in her voice.
The chapters were short and snappy and nearly every chapter shamelessly ended with a cliff hanger or a bomb shell moment which was probably why I couldn’t put this book down. There never seemed like an opportune moment for me to pause and when that happens, I think the author has got you hook, line and sinker.
Conclusion & Scoring 🎖️
This wasn’t an over-complicated and complex thriller but it was gripping, fast paced and a story that was brilliantly told. I thoroughly enjoyed the plot and enjoyed being swept away with it. I’ll definitely be recommending this book to others once it is published.