‘He was just considering changing lanes when the girl’s face appeared in the rear window, perfectly framed by the peeling stickers. She looked to be around five or six. Round-faced, pink-cheeked. Fine blonde hair pulled into two high pigtails. His first thought was that she should be strapped into a car seat. His second thought was IZZY.”
Three years ago, Gabe is driving home from work when he sees a little girl’s face appear in a passing car window, and in a split second he realises that it’s is his five-year-old daughter Izzy. When she mouths the words ‘daddy’ that confirms it. At first, he follows the battered old car covered in bumper stickers but then his senses come to him – how could this be his daughter when she is at home with her mother?
When he arrives home, he is faced with the tragic loss of his wife and what appears to be his daughter, but Gabe is unconvinced. However, no one believes he really saw Izzy. Now he spends his life driving up and down the highway looking for her.
Kate is also familiar with the highway; she works at a road-side diner that Gabe often stops at. She dubs him the ‘thin man’ due to his haggard appearance but it’s obvious that he has a complicated backstory. Kate is a single parent and has her own daily struggles to face including leaving her children in the care of her sister who isn’t always trustworthy.
Fran, like Gabe lives a transient life existing on the fringes trying to keep out of sight. Fran and her daughter Alice are being hunted and she has to do everything she can to protect her.
Then there are The Other People, a vigilante group on the dark web that will touch all of their lives…
J. Tudor entwines these three disturbing stories to create a very creepy but extremely compelling thriller. You are completely in the dark right until the very end and the premise that the story is based on is one that is chillingly plausible. It will make you reflect on the dire consequences that can result from acting out in grief and what lengths parents will go to for their children.
Referred to as ‘the Queen of creepy’ on the book cover, C. J. Tudor definitely has what it takes to get the hairs standing up on the back of your neck. Tense, fast-paced and atmospheric. This is a book that you won’t be able to put down so put your phone on silent, hide from the kids and indulge!