‘I just want my little girl back. She’s so little, she needs her mummy. And she doesn’t even have her panda bear with her. Find her, please find her, before it’s too late.’
Little Rosie Blake has been taken. Since going missing from the hospital where she was being treated for cancer, Rosie’s distraught parents haven’t heard a word. And time is swiftly running out. They have to find her, and right away, because Rosie can only survive for ten days without her medication.
With the police unable to find any leads at all, criminal behaviourist Jessie Boyle and her team are brought in to help. Who would be so evil as to steal a sick child? Narrowing down on a suspect, Jessie quickly moves to arrest them, only to discover the suspect’s dead body instead… And with no Rosie in sight, the case becomes even more desperate.
Who killed their chief suspect, and where is Rosie now? And is Rosie’s disappearance linked to the sudden revival of Dublin’s Hellfire Club, an ancient and terrifying cult obsessed with death and human sacrifice?
As the race to find Rosie intensifies, her heartbroken parents know their little girl’s time is running out. The clock is ticking, but Jessie clings on to the hope of finding her safe. Then her search leads her to Ireland’s remote mountains… Will Jessie be able to survive the deadly threat that awaits her, rescue Rosie, and get her back to safety, before it’s too late?
An utterly compelling crime thriller that will have you hooked from the very first line. Fans of Patricia Gibney, Lisa Gardner and Lisa Regan will not want to miss this.
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Shane Dunphy (S. A. Dunphy) was born in Brighton in 1973, but grew up in Ireland, where he has lived and worked for most of his life. A child protection worker for fifteen years, he is the bestselling author of seventeen books, including the number one Irish bestseller Wednesday’s Child and the Sunday Times Bestseller The Girl Who Couldn’t Smile. His bestselling series of crime novels (written under the name S. A. Dunphy) feature the criminologist David Dunnigan. Stories From the Margins, his new series of true crime books written for Audible, has been critically acclaimed and the second title in the series, The Bad Place, is an Audible True Crime bestseller.
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My thoughts: the team return for another case with folkloric overtones, although this time they’re rooted in more human behaviour – the Reavers are a strange band planning a sacrifice, spun out of the infamous Hellfire Club, and a child’s life is at stake.
There seems to be several different groups interested in little Rosie’s life – why did the hospital porter report that she wasn’t safe, what does an old school gangster have to do with any of this?
Dawn gets to go all Die Hard, kicking in doors and wielding guns, while Jessie goes off on her own and Terri is put in danger. It’s absolutely cracking, heart in mouth, stuff. There were several moments where it seemed as though we might lose a character as they’re up against possibly the nastiest bunch so far. And of course Jessie’s creepy serial killer stalker Uruz is still around sending her messages, are they any closer to identifying him? Cannot wait for book four.
*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.