The main character, Sarah Finch, lost her older brother when she was eight years old. Charlie walked away from home one afternoon and never came back so her parents, especially her mother, have not been able to get on with their lives.
Many years later, when Sarah works as a teacher, one of her twelve-year-old students goes missing, and Sarah finds her body during her jogging round. Soon she is deeply involved in the mystery, initially because she identifies with the poor parents in their terrible loss, but probably also because her own life as a teacher, cooped up with an alcoholic mother, is not nearly as interesting as investigating crimes. And of course she learns that if you meddle in crime, you will soon be exposed to all sorts of hardship and danger.
The plot is exciting all the way through, and on the whole the characters are interesting, but it seems as if Sarah Finch is not described quite consistently. Sometimes she seems strong and independent, at other points it is difficult to decide if the mother needs Sarah or Sarah needs her mother. My overall impression is that Casey has written a convincing and impressive debut, however, and I am going to watch out for more books from her hand.
The book was sent to me by my book fairy, Maxine.