As usual, seventeen-year-old Alice Teale walked out of school at the end of a bright spring day.
Except she’s not been seen since.
Alice was popular and well-liked, and her boyfriend, friends and family are desperate to find her.
But when the police start asking questions, it becomes clear that almost everyone has something to hide.
Detectives Beth Winter and Lucas Black don’t know which way to turn – but then they receive a disturbing package.
Pages from Alice’s precious diary.
Who could have sent them? And what have they done with Alice?
I think I may have found a new author to put on my regular reads!! Really enjoyed this book. So easy to get into and kept me gripped throughout.
Our two main characters, who were both so likeable, are Detectives Beth Winter and Lucas Black. Beth has been on the direct-entry scheme joining the Northumbria police force as ‘trainee detective’. Completing a two year training program and passing the National Investigator’s exam. Having so far only investigated minor crimes, she is about to be put to the test and given a job on a team looking into the disappearance of a seventeen year old girl. DS Lucas Black, an interesting character, has been in the force for a few years and has earned himself a reputation. Not the easiest to work with and surrounded with a fair bit of gossip which Beth knows nothing about. Will they get on? Or will her first big case turn out to be an absolute nightmare??
I really loved these two and I hope we may see them work together again in another book. The author really allows you to get to know each of them, but without distracting you from the story line and the investigation they are working on.
Talking of investigations, cue title: Alice Teale is Missing . A seventeen year old girl called Alice Teale leaves school one evening and hasn’t been seen since. A seemingly likeable girl who works hard at school and takes part in many of the after school clubs, is seen leaving late one evening through the main entrance by a PE teacher. A bit late to be leaving but nothing more strange than that. However, Alice doesn’t make it home and no one has seen or heard from her for six days.
Lucas and Beth are somewhat thrown together after they are instructed to take over the case, after the DI originally leading it suddenly decides to take early retirement and as Lucas’s own DI is, ‘out of action’, and not likely to return soon, Lucas is put in charge.
It is a gripping tale, throwing new light onto Alice’s life as you read, and uses her diary to allow us to slowing realise, that lots of things are going on around Alice that could have a bearing on her disappearance. I enjoyed the way the local area is described and adds feeling and depth to the story line, along with the other characters you meet in the book. The interviews between Beth, Lucas and those known to Alice are really well done. You can feel the awkwardness and tension as if you are in the room. The relationship between Beth and Lucas was wonderful to read and without giving away any spoilers, I really enjoyed their interactions as they spent more and more time with each other.
There are many twists and turns, as each new lead is followed up, and this keeps the book flowing at a great pace and leaves you wanting to read on. There isn’t one page that felt unnecessary. No padding out, no misdirection, just great story telling to keep you guessing till the end. A great finish that I most certainly didn’t see coming and I will definitely be looking into reading more by this author.
Thanks to the publisher for an advance copy of this book, that I was lucky enough to pick up a Theakston Crime Festival.
Alice Teale is Missing is out on Kindle ebook November 14th and paperback 23rd Jan 2020.