Three years ago Madison Culver went missing at the age of five while looking for a Christmas tree with her family. Private investigator Naomi Cottle continues the investigation and believes that Madison’s disappearance can only be the result of an abduction. Naomi’s personal journey from foster child to adulthood parallels her search for Madison, and as her fears and sources of determination come to light, the narrative also dips into Madison’s mind, allowing readers to experience her terrifying ordeal at the hands of her captor.
This was a book that I randomly picked up at the library and I’m so glad I did. I will not lie and say I don’t ‘judge books by their cover’ but I do. Most of us do. Usually, the title and cover draw me in and then the synopsis makes me take it home. That was the case with this one. I started reading it at 11:30pm, which any self respecting nerd knows they SHOULD NOT do. I finished it the same night. 3:40am and I closed the book with a sense of peace and completion.
I usually don’t like books that have any form of child abuse in them. I experienced abuse, neglect and other poisonous happenings as a kid and it’s not something I want to read about. I enjoy reading and often times, I am doing it because it makes me feel better. I also do it because I used it as a coping mechanism as a kid. It keeps me safe. It hides me until I’m ready to fight. Why read about something that I’ve been trying to escape my entire life…and all that jazz.
That being said, I had no idea this book would have any mention of that. Yes, I read the synopsis but I definitely thought this was going down a different path. I believe that the fact that I read it, that I continued to push forward, speaks for itself.
The way Denfeld writes is so beautiful that I couldn’t put the book down. The way she spins each touch and each look as subtle metaphors, from the woods, will surprise you. At first, you will say, “Is she talking about…?”
I wanted to read more, wanted to see what happened to this small child. I wanted to find out if Naomi would find the child or if there would only be bones or worse…nothing at all? I asked myself if I was ok with it ending either way. I asked myself if Naomi could really do this without any super powers. If this was going to have some sort of paranormal or supernatural element. I wanted to know if she was the kid whisperer.
I wanted Madison to be found. I wanted her to be lost. I wanted to see how her parents grieved and, after all these years, how they coped. At 330am, I was coming upon the end of the book and I had to sit up. I had to prepare myself for the end. It was just amazing.
I would recommend this to any and everyone. Trust me, this one is worth reading. I will say, I also plan to look at other books by her. I love her writing style and I want to know more!
If you’ve read this book, liked it, disliked it, hated it or haven’t read it yet but plan to…let me know in the comments! I’d love to hear your thoughts. If you have any book suggestions or any reviews you’d like to see here, let me know!