"...a well rounded novel of despair and faith, or sometimes lack of faith, in marriage and motherhood."


Jessica Finnegan has everything she could ever wish for; a handsome husband who is doing well for himself, a gorgeous house and a newborn baby boy. What more could she ask for?

But Jess feels that she could be a better mother. Surely the first months should be bliss, but for Jess they have been a nightmare and she feels she just can't cope. Then, on a day out with her family, Jess' baby, Louis goes missing and her husband is found beaten and unconscious. Feeling pangs of guilt, Jess lives the nightmare of every mother - the theft of a child. As her husband lays in hospital, his memory gone as to the events that led up to Louis' disappearance, Jessica begins to suspect the people around her - even her own family - as she stumbles from one lost hope to another, desperate to find her baby.

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This is the first novel from Claire Seeber who seems able to write a well rounded novel of despair and faith, or sometimes lack of faith, in marriage and motherhood. The characters who inhabit the novel sometimes seem to be caricatures, like the heroin addicted brother who is immediately in the line-up of suspects. Despite this, I thought Robbie was one of the most interesting people populating this novel. The story of the loss and search for Louis is well paced, although the novel does take some time to get started as there are many passages describing Jessica's grief at the disappearance of her child. Some of the writing was a little clich├ęd - something which the writer will doubtless avoid as more of her books are published. Despite these niggles, I found the author told a strong story which was narrated well. The subject matter is interesting in light of the first anniversary of the disappearance of Maddie McGann and may possibly appeal more to female readers - but this is certainly a book to try.

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