Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Little Liar by Clare Boyd! My thanks to Kim Nash at Bookouture for the opportunity and my review copy, which I received via Netgalley.
Author : Clare Boyd
Title : Little Liar
Pages : 410
Publisher : Bookouture
Publication date : February 1, 2018
When a child’s scream pierces the night, Mira does what any good neighbour would do: she calls the police. She wants to make sure that Rosie, the little girl next door, is safe.
Opening her front door to the police the next morning, Gemma’s picture-perfect family is forced under scrutiny of social services.
As her flawless life begins to crumble around her, Gemma must fight to defend the family she loves and protect her daughter from the terrible secret she’s been keeping.
But who has Rosie been confiding in when Gemma’s back is turned? And why has she lied to the police?
When Rosie disappears without a trace, Gemma thinks she only has herself to blame. That is, until she finds a little pink diary containing a truth even more devastating than the lie.
When a child’s scream from the house next door cuts through Mira’s heart like a spear, she sees no other option but to call the police and make sure eleven year old Rosie is safe. Before Rosie’s mother, Gemma, can even blink, the police and social services are involved and her seemingly picture perfect family life falls to pieces. But things are not quite as they seem.
I don’t have kids (thank goodness), nor do I have the meddling kind of neighbours and yet it’s incredibly easy to imagine this frightening scenario, while you sit in your cosy living room reading this story and watch things spiral completely out of control. I’m sure all parents are familiar with temper tantrums thrown by their offspring. My sister’s youngest suffered from the hysterical (and embarrassing) throwing-self-across-the-floor ones, which I thought only happened on television. But now imagine a neighbour or a bystander involving the police. Easily done. Sadly not so easily fixed.
I had a hard time connecting with Gemma, although as the story went on and we learned a bit more about her background, I could see where she came from and understood her a bit more. For me though, Mira was the stand-out character. She’s brilliantly complicated and while it would be completely understandable to see her as the “bad guy” in this scenario, her story is so heartbreaking and complex that I couldn’t help but feel for her. I loved how the author included Rosie’s diary entries, which put a totally different spin on things.
Clare Boyd has delivered a chilling, unnerving and thought-provoking story that makes you wonder. What would you do? Ultimately, you just never know what goes on behind closed doors, do you? Would you sit back and do nothing and maybe get it wrong? Or would you act? And maybe get it wrong as well? Little Liar may be a tad of a slow-burner but it had me hooked and I couldn’t wait to see what the outcome in this gripping family drama would be. I very much look forward to reading more by Clare Boyd.
Little Liar was published on February 1st.
Clare lives with her husband and their two daughters in Surrey, where her little green shed at the bottom of the garden provides a haven for her writing life. Before becoming a writer, she enjoyed a career in television, as a researcher in documentaries and then as a script editor in drama at the BBC and Channel Four, where her love of storytelling took hold.