Lisa Gardner

Find Her

"We’ve had ‘Gone Girl’… now we have ‘Find Her’"


Flora Dane was kidnapped – and survived. She survived after four hundred and seventy-two days. She was kept in a box most of the time – only let out when her captor deigned to feed and water her. She came out of it alive… which is more than could be said for her tormentor, Jacob Ness. But then again, maybe he was the lucky one, and not her. Flora has to live day to day, constantly conquering her fears, trying to deal with being a different woman, one shaped by being inside a wood coffin for over a year. But is there more to Flora than she is telling?

D.D. Warren meets Flora naked, having just set fire to Devon Goulding who had kidnapped Flora and possibly other women, one in particular – Stacey Summers. Stacey has been missing for months and Flora suspects Goulding was involved. However, she managed to set him on fire and now they guy is dead, burned to a crisp. Enter Dr. Samuel Keynes who is Flora’s ‘friend’ who happens to also be an FBI agent. He tries to protect Flora, but D.D. feels he is just being obstructive – even if in a polite manner. And then that same day, Flora goes missing, presumed kidnapped. It is now down to Warren and Keynes to track down those who have abducted her before any harm comes to Flora, they must ‘find her’.

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Find Her’ is an exceptional novel. This in no way glorifies kidnapping or sensationalises it, this is ‘get your hands dirty’ dark stuff. Gardner shifts attention to and from D.D. to Flora. She breathes life in to Flora making me feel at points that I was reading someone’s autobiography rather than a piece of fiction. Gardner chronicles the smallest, infinitesimal detail to bring her pictures alive so that the sounds, smells and in some cases, the fear is palpable and pungent. Gardner perfectly balances it so I felt repulsed but at the same time was propelled onwards. My friend, Helen perfectly vocalised what I was thinking: ‘you feel like an intruder in Flora’s thoughts, her fears and it makes you feel uncomfortable, as though you shouldn’t be listening in, but Gardner makes you feel as though you can’t help but stay and hear more’! And that’s it in a nutshell. I don’t think I have felt more uncomfortable reading a book and at the same time had that tingling feeling since I read ‘The Silence of the Lambs’ – and that was WAY back in the day! Of course this features D.D. and other regulars, but to me this is Flora’s story, her journey. The scenes following Flora’s second abduction are some of the tortuous I have read in many a year. The psychological torment that follows the physical will make your skin crawl. I interviewed Lisa in London last year and you couldn’t meet a nicer, lovelier, funnier lady – but boy! – am I gonna watch her close next time we meet! There are dark depths in that lady! ‘Find Her’ is Lisa Gardner at full throttle. You've had ‘Gone Girl’… now read ‘Find Her’.

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