Monday, 25 August 2014

Review: Shattered Secrets by Karen Harper

**** 4 Stars

I had never heard of Karen Harper before requesting a copy of Shattered Secrets on Netgalley. The synopsis made it sound very much like my kind of crime novel and it is the first in a series and I just love crime series.

The Blurb

Every town has its secrets…

Returning to Cold Creek, Ohio, is an act of courage for Tess Lockwood. Abducted and held captive as a young girl, she is unable to remember anything about the crime that destroyed her childhood and tore her family apart. Now a grown woman with a bright future, she is certain she has put the past behind her. But when she inherits the family home, Tess must confront the demons that still haunt her and the town of Cold Creek.

Gabe McCord has always blamed himself for what happened to Tess. He had been a teenager when she was snatched from the group of children he was responsible for watching. Now Gabe has taken on the role of sheriff and hopes to shed new light on the cold case, especially given his growing feelings for Tess.

Tess isn't ready to recall what happened to her, and she has no intention of digging up any details that might remind her of the truth. But when another child in the town goes missing, she's certain it's related to her return to Cold Creek. Together,Tess and Gabe will have to work to unlock their painful memories in order to save another child and heal their damaged souls, for good…

My Thoughts

The first few sentences of this book are totally gripping and your are immediately hooked. They really set the scene, leaving you wanting to know more. Just what did happen to Tess Lockwood all those years ago in Cold Creek?

Tess Lockwood, is a young woman returning to her home town of Cold Creek for the first time in almost twenty years. She is one of three sisters and her mother has passed away leaving her the family home so Tess, begrudgingly returns to Cold Creek to sell the house. When Tess was a child she was abducted but eventually escaped after many months. She has no real recollections of what happened to her in the time she was away from her family but everything is set to come crashing back down around her when her return to Cold Creek coincides with another young girl going missing.

Gabe McCord, is the town sheriff, he was also Tess's teenage neighbour responsible for watching Tess, on the day she was abducted and he is still living with his guilt over that fateful day. He is also haunted by the disappearance of potentially 3 more little girls that he believes are all linked to Tess's cold case.

This book is very intense and is full of suspense and intrigue. Harper, has created an extremely creepy little town full of cornfields, freaky scarecrows, a taxidermist, an animal cemetery and a commune. She also gives us quite a list of potential suspects, leaving Tess wondering about a lot of people who live in town and taking risks to rule people out as suspects. This all just adds to the suspense.

I must say that I did not work out who was the kidnapper, and it came as a total shock to me. But hey that's what makes a good crime novel. I am so pleased that this is the first in a planned trilogy. Each of the next two books focuses on one of Tess's sisters in turn.

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