Saturday, 18 May 2013

Books Read: Susan Lewis - No Child of Mine

What if you knew a child was in danger - and no one believed you?

Alex Lake's day job is all about helping people, especially children. She cares about them passionately and does everything in her power to rescue them from those who mean them harm. 

When the case of three-year-old Ottilie Wade comes to her attention, Alex feels an overpowering need to make a real difference in the little girl's life, but no one is prepared to believe that Ottilie is in danger. 

In the end, Alex makes a decision that has consequences that no one, least of all Alex, could have foreseen.

It's been quite a few years since I read a book by Susan Lewis so when I saw that No Child of Mine was available to request for review in NetGalley I decided to apply for a copy.  

Alex Lake is a dedicated social worker who wants the best possible care for all the children that she's responsible for and she'll do whatever it takes to protect them even if it puts herself in danger.   

During a trip to a park with her sister and her kids, Alex spots a little girl on her own and tries to talk to her to make sure she was OK but the girl won't look at her or talk to her.  Eventually the girl's father turns up and takes her away but there's something about the look the girl gives as she's walking away that strikes a chord with Alex.

When Alex receives an anonymous call to look into the Wade family she starts investigating to see if there are any triggers to suggest that the daughter Ottilie is at risk.  At first glance there is nothing to suggest that there is but after her initial visit to the family, Alex realises that it's the father and daughter she met in the park and something still doesn't feel right but with no evidence to prove her case there's nothing she can officially do.

But Alex cannot ignore her gut feeling that Ottilie is in danger so continues to investigate the family but could it be too late by the time she gets enough evidence for her superiors to believe her? 

This was an extremely difficult book to read and I found it quite traumatic at times so was one of those books that I had to stop reading, put down and pick up again later.  I had expected there to be some form of abuse in the storyline after reading the synopsis but that didn't make it any easier to read especially when a 3 year-old girl was involved. 

At first I wasn't sure about the ending as it didn't feel right but now that I know that there is a sequel, Don't Let Me Go, it makes more sense so will have to read that book too to see if the story comes to a fitting conclusion.

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