Last Seen – Book Review

Detective Bernadette Noel

I can see her, shouting with laughter as she swings as high as she can, her beautiful blonde curls flying out behind her. I can feel her tiny hot hand in mine, and my heart aches. My little girl. If only I’d listened to my gut. Then maybe she’d be safe here with me…

When five-year-old Molly Reynolds is snatched from the park in the small village of Otterfield, Detective Bernadette ‘Bernie’ Noel throws herself into the search, sick with worry for the quiet, sensitive little girl and her distraught mother.

Wasting no time, Bernie finds a small green cardigan under a bush in the park. It still has the smiley face sticker Molly won that week at school. It’s the first in a chain of clues – and Bernie can’t shake the feeling that it was left deliberately, as a message.

But Bernie encounters a wall of silence. Otterfield is a close-knit community, yet no one in the village seems to care that Molly is missing at all. Why?

And then Bernie makes a chilling discovery: twenty-five years ago, another little girl went missing from the area. Her name was Sophie, and all they ever found of her was her teddy bear, hidden under a bush. Now Bernie knows she’s in a race against time to save Molly’s life.

Bernie’s team work round the clock to find a connection between the two girls, and just when they think they’re making progress a devastating tragedy strikes at the heart of the case. Molly’s family have been hiding a secret, and now their little girl is in greater danger than ever.

Can Bernie outwit the most warped criminal she has ever faced and bring Molly home safe, or will another innocent life be lost?

A completely addictive crime thriller with mind-blowing twists that will have you reading late into the night. If you like Val McDermid, D.S. Butler or Angela Marsons, you’ll love Joy Kluver.

No. of pages:- 358 pages

Date published:- March 26th 2021

Publisher:- Bookouture

Genre:- Thriller

Molly, a toddler was last seen in the park–she was with her mother and the next minute, she was gone. DI Bernie starts investigating Molly’s abduction in this small neighborhood but it seems as if no one in the town wants to help with the investigation and there was another abduction that happened some twenty years ago, the main suspect being Molly’s grandfather Derek…

To me, this was a fast paced thriller–with some twists and turns. The writing was great and the author did a good job drawing the reader into the story. The characters are all likable, particularly the main character DI Bernie Noel, who seems to have a past. Finding Molly was so dramatic and realistic that I actually felt like I was in the part of that search with the police team! The ending was great and did not expect that ending!

I really enjoyed reading this book and I cannot wait to read the series–this is the first book of the DI Bernie Noel series.

Thank you Netgalley and Bookouture for the ARC–this review is based on my honest opinion–worth four stars!

Joy Kluver

Joy Kluver has been an avid reader and writer since childhood. More recently she’s been escaping the madness of motherhood by turning her hand to crime novels. A book blogger, she’s also part of the First Monday Crime team and if you’ve been to any of their events it’s likely you’ve eaten one of her cookies. She also organises author talks for her local library. Joy lives in SW London with her husband and three children. ‘Last Seen’ is her debut novel and the first book in the DI Bernadette Noel series.

Joy is represented by Anne Williams at the Kate Horden Literary Agency.

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