Come Back For Me by Heidi Perks
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Time taken to read - 1 day
Pages - 400
Publisher - Cornerstone
Source - Review copy
Blurb from Goodreads
A shocking discovery.
An island wrapped in secrets.
A tiny island community is stunned by the discovery of a long-buried body.
For Stella Harvey, the news is doubly shocking: the body was found in the garden of her childhood home.
The home her family fled without explanation twenty-five years ago.
Now, questioning her past and desperate to unearth the truth, Stella returns to the isolated Dorset island. But she quickly finds that the community she left isn’t as welcoming as she remembers – and that people in it will go to any length to protect their secrets.
But one thing rings true…
You can’t bury the truth forever.
Stella and her family had to leave the island when she was just a little girl, late in the middle of the night, dangerous weather to be sailing. No explanation, no looking back, now twenty five years later a body has been found in her garden. After seeing it on the news Stella HAS to go back to the island to try and get some answers. Islands are notorious for keeping things private and Stella is no longer one of them, will she get any answers or wish she had never gone looking in the first place?
We flip between then, when Stella and her family lived on the island and the run up to what made them leave to present day, Stella trying to make sense of her past and going to the island, trying to get answers. From the beginning we know something isn't right, her relationship with her sister is questionable, she doesn't come across as a very nice person. She is pretty rude, curt or dismissive yet Stella continues to be her strongest support. Her father can't give her much in the way of information so the island is her only option.
I think many can relate to Stella, in parts, the needing to know, the longing for the place you grew up even if you have been away from it longer than you lived there. When we get to the island it becomes a wee bit "we only like locals" and she gets no support from home either. I really felt for her, I would want to know too, reconnect with old friends and families. I would even want to go back to my old home and have a look, well maybe not if they found a body!
You feel, well I did, there is something big going on that Stella has unwittingly found herself drawn into but as well as the whole there is a body it is her personal journey. The need for closure, re-connection, relationships lacking or missing in her adult life I felt that was what urged her back to the island. I do like a mystery/thriller where you know there is skulduggery and some kind of danger hinted or looming but I think it a great thing when the author interweaves a personal side to it all.
Islands and small communities always have secrets, Stella is desperate to find out what theirs is, loyalty is huge and sometimes some people will do anything to protect a secret. Whilst I can't say I loved any of the characters I did sink into their lives and feel as much frustration as Stella to uncover the mystery of her old home and her family. This was my first dance with this author, it won't be ,my last, 4/5 for me this time. A psychological thriller with lots of family drama, dynamics, relationships, secrets and what can happen when you don't let go of the past!