Lullaby by Claire Seeber
|Lullaby by Claire Seeber|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: An elegantly-constructed mystery about the disappearance of baby Louis and husband Mickey during a visit to the Tate Modern will have you turning the pages until the neat twist at the very end. Highly recommended by The Bookbag.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 464||Date: October 2007|
It began as a family day out for Jess Finnegan and there hadn't been too many of them recently. She and Mickey had only met about a year ago, fallen in lust with each other - and then Jess became pregnant. They married just two months before the baby was due, but only four weeks before Louis was born. The day out at the exhibition at the Tate Modern was a treat and a break from the routine demands of motherhood. It turned into a nightmare.
One minute the threesome were having a snack together, with Mickey and Jess bickering ever so slightly as is so often the way on such outings. Mickey went on ahead with Louis in the buggy and Jess simply couldn't find them. In a growing panic she finally contacts the police. Later in the day Mickey is found, unconscious and badly beaten, but there's no sign of Louis.
Claire Seeber has a remarkable talent for conveying panic. I felt it viscerally. I couldn't read the book and I couldn't not read it. The tension ratcheted up to the point where I felt like a tightly-coiled spring. Who had taken Louis? Was it a random snatch or was the culprit closer to home? The edginess of the relationship with the police is captured perfectly, veering from the absolute mistrust which Jess feels because of her family background, through to a pseudo-sexual attraction as Jess realises that DI Silver is probably the only person she can rely on.
Jess and her relationships are compelling. The fragility of her marriage to Mickey, who has given Jess wealth and privilege but little in the way of stability or support, surrounds the story like a spider's web. Does he love Jess? Does Jess even know if she loves him? I was less convinced by some of her female 'supporters'. Occasionally Deb, the policewoman, Shirl, the best friend and Leigh, her sister became confused in my mind, but it's a relatively minor quibble in a book which kept me turning the pages right up to the unexpected twist at the end. Jess seemed so totally real that I felt I probably knew her and I rather hope that we hear more of DI Silver.
Before I started the book I did wonder if it was riding on the back of the Madeleine McCann tragedy, but I came to the conclusion that it was not. It's set at the time of the 7/7 bombings in London and is an elegantly constructed mystery from a writer whom I hope to read again.
I'd like to thank the publishers for sending this book to The Bookbag.
If you enjoy this type of book then you might also like Hidden by Katy Gardner.
You can read more book reviews or buy Lullaby by Claire Seeber at Amazon.co.uk.
You can read more book reviews or buy Lullaby by Claire Seeber at Amazon.com.
Lullaby by Claire Seeber is in the Top Ten Crime Novels.
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