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  • Dark & Distressing

    Jenny Kristal, then aged six, is walking to her friends house, but she never made it and vanished from the street. Twelve years later she returns home, but where has she been, and why? And for what reason is her brother not particularly pleased about her reappearance? Why doesn’t he believe that this woman is the sister he lost years ago? Jenny starts receiving emails informing her that her family home is not safe, and it's not long before Jenny begins to wonder if her rediscovered family are hiding dark secrets. I was intrigued from the moment I first met the young woman who claimed to be the kidnapped girl. How had she managed to escape from her kidnappers? The author had such a gripping writing style, cleverly creating a real sense of continual apprehension and danger as I fretted over Jenny's level of safety. This gave the book its highly original take on a well-trodden theme, as once a missing child is found, you reasonably assume that the nightmare is over. S.K. Barnett created a tremendous feeling of claustrophobia as Jenny becomes reacquainted with the family who lost her. There were ominous undertones as she tried to settle into her new life. I was keen to know what was really happening and if everything was as it appeared. As the family dynamics are gradually uncovered the reader is able to see the cracks that slowly spread, but then suddenly everything shatters. I thought I had the ending sussed out, but S.K. Barnett lobbed in a final twist that I didn’t see coming. The concept of Safe was very original, and I thought it was incredibly well-told. This exciting, dark, shocking, and unputdownable drama-thriller is guaranteed to shock you in every conceivable way. I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Random House UK, Cornerstone/ Century via NetGalley and this review is my unbiased opinion.

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