Thursday 30 March 2017

The Lost Children by Helen Phifer

The Lost Children by Helen Phifer
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Lizzy pulled the covers over her head. Then she realised what was being dragged behind the person with the torch. She rammed her fist into her mouth to stop herself from screaming…

For decades, The Moore Asylum was home to the forgotten children of Brooklyn Bay. But ever since a scandal forced its closure, the abandoned building has cast an imposing shadow. Until now – when an elderly man is found dead, his body strapped to an ancient gurney...

Detective Lucy Harwin, still reeling from a previous case that ended in the devastating murder of a mother and her child, finds herself on the trail of a killer ruthlessly fixated on avenging the asylum’s wrongs.

What disturbing secrets lie within the asylum’s walls? Together with her partner Detective Mattie Jackson, Lucy begins to unearth its terrible history, and the horrors endured by the vulnerable children.

As the attacks escalate and a woman is murdered on her own doorstep, Lucy is forced into a terrifying game of cat and mouse with a twisted individual. But can Lucy stop a murderer with nothing left to lose?


I really, really wanted to like this book, but for me were there just too many things that bothered me to truly enjoy reading this book. The Lost Children started off great, with the discovery of a dead body in the old asylum and I enjoyed the flashbacks during the books progress to 1975 when young Lizzy is committed to the asylum. I was intrigued by the story and wondered what the past had to do with the present murder.  However, I started to feel a bit annoyed with Detective Lucy Harwin as the story progressed, especially her private life. Her ex-husband had left her for another woman, and to be honest can I understand him and I can also understand why their daughter wanted to live with him instead of Lucy. Lucy, in my opinion, acted more like a woman in her early twenties than her thirties. The worst thing is that I felt the same about Mattie, and yes he is a few years younger than Lucy, but it felt like they were adolescents not grown adults working as cops. And Mattie's crush on Lucy did not amuse me either.

Then we have the case, it was just too predictable and Lucy made some extraordinary leaps in the investigations that astonished me. I mean the kind of "I have no evidence to support this, but I think this is right since I'm clairvoyant, so let's go for it. No, she's not clairvoyant, but there were moments when I honestly thought she was since everything could be normal, but she had a gut feeling that something was wrong and of course it was. Then, we have the killers identity, no big surprise there either.

The part I like the best was the flashbacks to asylum if the book had focused more on the past and the girls there and had a stronger case with more mature characters would I have loved this book. This book had potentials and the first half of the book is good, but the later half just didn't work for me so much.

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review!

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