BEFORE SHE DISAPPEARED BY LISA GARDNER #bookreview #blogtour @LisaGardnerBks @Rachel90Kennedy


International Thriller Writers Award winner
Multiple  New York Times and Sunday Times bestseller  

Published by Century  | Hardback |
26th January 2021 | £12.99


Frankie Elkin has dedicated her life to doing what no one else will: searching for missing people the world has forgotten.

When the police have given up, when the public no longer remembers, when the media has never paid attention, Frankie starts looking. She has found fourteen victims to date, but none yet alive. Traveling from city to city with more regrets than belongings, Frankie is drawn to a new case in Boston, and to a neighbourhood with a rough reputation.

Angelique Badeau, a local teenager and Haitian immigrant, vanished eleven months ago in the middle of the day from her high school.  No scrap of surveillance footage, no cell phone tracking;
Angelique simply disappeared.

Despite resistance from the Boston PD and the victim’s wary family, Frankie starts to unpick the truth of Angelique’s disappearance and starts to discover there are those that don’t want these questions answered. But Frankie will stop at nothing to find Angelique and bring her home, even if it means the next person to go missing will be herself……..


What a great book!

The author’s first standalone novel in ten years and she’s written a corker! I couldn’t put it down. I was immediately gripped by this novel. The author’s writing sucked me right in to the point when I could picture myself on the same sidewalk as our main character, seeing the same buildings, right down to smelling the delicious sounding patties and pastries in the local bakeries.

Frankie Elgin, a recovering alcoholic, has spent the last ten years travelling around the country, tracking down missing persons. So far she has a 100% success rate, finding all 14 victims, however, none of them still alive. Searching online for her next destination she finds the case of teenager Angelique ‘Angel’ Badeau, missing for nearly a year now. With only the bag on her back, for Frankie has enough ‘baggage’ already, she heads to Boston, to Mattapan, a neighbourhood that won’t be that pleased to see her, but she’s used to that.

As we follow Frankie on her search for Angel we are taken on a fast paced, thriller of a journey but also one full of compassion, heartbreak and rich, multi-layered characters that jump off the page. All with a story to tell including Frankie, but does she want anyone to know?

I loved the character of Frankie and indeed many more of the others in this story. She treats her unpaid job as if it is some kind of penance or atonement of which she doesn’t appear to be afraid if it even gets her killed, this is much to the annoyance of Detective Lothan.

The story of Angel is a multi-layered one and builds and grows as you read, with new leads, connections, twists and turns that kept me glued to the page. The pace was just right, making a suspenseful mystery, but this novel also allows for it’s characters to shine. Characters like Stoney and Viv who own/work at the bar where Frankie finds a room and work are brilliantly written, and even though they appear less than others their interactions with Frankie give the reader such a great picture of them. Plus of course Piper the cat, a match for Frankie herself.

The book touches on very serious issues that are relevant to the area and the people who live there, adding even more heart to this great plot and story.

If you like thrillers, police procedurals or mystery novels I would highly recommend this book. Hey! If you like an engaging read full of great characters, read this book!



New York Times #1 bestselling crime novelist Lisa Gardner began her career in food service, but after catching her hair on fire numerous times, she took the hint and focused on writing instead. A self-described research junkie, she has parlayed her interest in police procedure, criminal minds and twisted plots into a streak of bestselling suspense novels. Her 2010 novel, THE NEIGHBOR, won Best Thriller from the International Thriller Writers. Most recently, she was honoured with the Silver Bullet Award for her work with at-risk children and homeless animals. Lisa loves to hike, travel the world, and yes, read, read, read!

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