On the morning she will never forget, suburban teenager Cynthia Archer awakes with a nasty hangover and a feeling she is going to have an even nastier confrontation with her mom and dad. But when she leaves her bedroom, she discovers the house is empty, with no sign of her parents or younger brother Todd. In the blink of an eye, without any explanation, her family has simply disappeared. Twenty-five years later Cynthia is still haunted by unanswered questions. Were her family murdered? If so, why was she spared? And if they're alive, why did they abandon her in such a cruel way?
Now married with a daughter of her own, Cynthia fears that her new family will be taken from her just as her first one was. And so she agrees to take part in a TV documentary revisiting the case, in the hope that somebody somewhere will remember something - or even that her father, mother or brother might finally reach out to her...
Then a letter arrives which makes no sense and yet chills Cynthia to the core. And soon she begins to realise that stirring up the past could be the worst mistake she has ever made...
When I read this book's blurb, I immediately realised that it would be an intriguing mystery novel. However, I had no idea of the direction that this story would take. I was really hooked from page 1.
This is the story of Cynthia Bigge, a fourteen year old girl who wakes up one morning to find her house quiet and empty. Her parents are not there having breakfast and her older brother Todd is not there either. The beds have not been slept into and the kitchen is clean. The cars are not in the drive-in.
She had a fight with her parents the previous night after her father had caught her in a car with a boy who had a bad reputation. She went to school that day and when she returned home there was still no sign of her family. Where has everyone gone? What happened? Did her family leave her because she is behaving badly or has something more sinister happened to them?
Twenty five years pass and Cynthia is now married to Terry and has a daughter but she still has no answers to what happened to her family on that night. Her story is shown on a tv programme and soon afterwards strange things begin to happen. Things that make Cynthia wonder whether trying to find answers to her questions is such a great idea after all.
This novel kept me on the edge at all times and it was full of surprises, twists and turns. I wanted desperately to know what is going to happen next.
No wonder that this novel has won awards. I think it is ideal to be made into a movie and I strongly recommend it to anyone.
This was my first Linwood Barclay novel and I will certainly be reading all his other novels.