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Review by Suze
Claire's fifteen-year-old son Billy is missing. Claire feels guilty as she wasn't there the night he left home and never came back. Claire's family isn't very open. She shares her house with her husband Mark, their oldest son Jake and his girlfriend Kira. When an appeal for information six months after Billy's disappearance goes wrong Claire starts looking for clues, anything that can tell her more about her son's whereabouts. Slowly she discovers all kinds of family secrets, little bits of information come to the surface. Will it be enough to find her son?
Claire has blackouts, which means she isn't a reliable narrator. Sometimes important things are happening to her and she doesn't have a clue what they are as she can't remember where she's been and what she's done during those episodes. I loved that part of the story as that made the story chaotic and gripping. I was curious to find out more, to know what happened to Billy. C.L. Taylor lets the reader get to know him by text messages he's exchanging. That's another intriguing part of the story. I liked this approach very much.
Claire's family isn't functioning very well. They keep secrets from each other, they fight and they don't talk about anything important. I had no idea who I could trust and couldn't stop reading as I desperately wanted to find out. I was hooked from the start and couldn't wait to know what happened to Billy on the night he disappeared. C.L. Taylor knows how to build up suspense. I enjoyed reading about new clues. I also felt Claire's despair. Not knowing what happened to your son and having to miss him is the most awful thing that can happen to a mother. Claire is strong in some ways and not so strong in others. She isn't very balanced, doesn't always make rational decisions and she's impulsive. I loved how her actions were confusing me sometimes.
I think The Missing is a fast-paced rollercoaster read. C.L. Taylor can write and the story has an easy flow. The ending of the story is surprising, something I didn't expect at all. That's exactly how I like it. I loved everything about this book, it's an amazing read.