A rookie policewoman probes frightening events from her youth that have haunted her ever since.
Claire Cooper harbors many disturbing questions about the disappearance of her mother, which occurred when she was a child, and the aftermath of a violent prank she participated in as a teenager. These unsettling events lead to her decision, recounted in taut first-person narration, to become a police officer. Moving fluidly forward and back in time, she shows her teenage self falling in with a slacker crowd. In 2003 on Halloween night, which they call "Hop-tu-naa," she urges her friends to take revenge on the man she blames for her mother's death. His name is Edward Caine, and Mum worked as his personal assistant in his mansion on the Isle of Man, where Claire often accompanied her and played with Caine's rowdy son, Morgan. On a Hop-tu-naa several years earlier, Caine had asked Mum to work late, and she planned to return after taking young Claire home. Claire never saw her again, and Caine of course claimed that she never made it back. Teenage Claire and friends break into the Caine mansion and vandalize it, but the gesture gives her no comfort. Ominous italicized snippets from the killer's perspective pepper the second half of the tale as adult Claire questions her dad, Morgan, and Edward Caine, and all her accomplices in the break-in on the way to uncovering the truth about Mum.
Solid, brooding suspense with a whodunit chaser from Ewan (Dead Line, 2014, etc.), author of the more upbeat Good Thief series.