“There is no friend as loyal as a book.” ― Ernest Hemingway
This was the first book I read by Nicci Gerrard, and I didn't really have any expectations whatsoever, though I did expect it to be a thriller. It wasn't. The back cover already mentioned that the character who went missing, Johnny, would stay missing for multiple years, so when the book started of from before he even disappeared, there wasn't really much of a surprise to it.
The story is really about how his family and the people that are left behind feel about his disappearance and how they deal with it. I must say I found the first half of the book extremely boring. The narrator in this part of the book was Isabel, Johnny's mother, and the whole first half is basically about him disappearing and how sad and devastated she feels and everything. I understand that she must have felt awful indeed, but I really didn't feel like I could empathize with her. All she did was run around and yell at everyone and mentally collapse. Also, the first part of the book after Johnny disappeared was about how they searched for him, which I also found extremely boring and unnecessary to read because I already knew they wouldn't find him.
When the narrator changed and the story was told from Felix' point of view (the father) it became a bit less boring, but still not too exciting, but when it changed again to Mia's point of view (the sister) I became more interested. I liked her character more and I could emphasize much better with her. I assume this has to do with her age and the fact that I can imagine how it much feel to lose your brother, while I can't imagine losing a son. Also, she dealt with her feelings in a whole different way her parents did, and I was never irritated by the way she acted.
I do think Nicci Gerrard did a really good job in describing her characters, they all had a personality that was very unique to their character and they all seemed really clear to me.
Also, I liked the writing style, although it sometimes bothered me a bit because from time to time it seemed a bit to dramatic and made me feel like I was reading a cheesy romance.
Overall, I didn't think it was a horrible book, but I thought it was a bit to long-winded and I don't think I would read it again. I can see why people would like it, but it just wasn't for me.