My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Time taken to read - 2 days
Publisher - Phoenix
Pages - 321
Blurb from Goodreads
When two girls are abducted and killed in Missouri, journalist Camille Preaker is sent back to her home town to report on the crimes. Long-haunted by a childhood tragedy and estranged from her mother for years, Camille suddenly finds herself installed once again in her family's mansion, reacquainting herself with her distant mother and the half-sister she barely knows - a precocious 13-year-old who holds a disquieting grip on the town. As Camille works to uncover the truth about these violent crimes, she finds herself identifying with the young victims - a bit too strongly. Clues keep leading to dead ends, forcing Camille to unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past to get at the story. Dogged by her own demons, Camille will have to confront what happened to her years before if she wants to survive this homecoming.
Camille Preaker is our main character and a journalist. When a child goes missing from her home town and one had gone missing previously she is sent home to get the scoop. Camille has many issues that stem from a strained childhood and troubled relationship with her mother. She has a 13 year old sister who has some major issues and controls and dominates some of the town. Trying to break down the barriers to get the story in town, deal with her sister and cope with her mother and their relationship proves to be quite a task for Camille.
This story is really quite disturbing I found to be honest. Camille has scars all over her body, her way of coping with her issues growing up. As the story progresses we discover just how dark Camilles past is and why she behaves as she does. The previous murder of the little girl was uncomfortable to read about, any ill to a child is however this killer makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up.
Whilst this is a book about a troubled reporter investigating in her own home town it is largely more about her dysfunctional family. Her coping mechanisms of trying to deal with it, her personal demons being quieted or confronted. There is some uncomfortable references to sexual encounters that some people may be fine with but worth giving a heads up. There is also a reference to some animal cruelty, in my opinion, that makes for uncomfortable reading too.
It is a dark tale that, for me, was like a car crash, horrific but you find it hard to look away. I felt I needed a shower after reading it, dark, gritty, brutal but very enthralling, 3/5 for me. I have read Gone Girl and have Dark Places still to read by this author, she has a specific tone to her writing, if you liked Gone Girl I think you may well "enjoy" this one.