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Then She Was Gone
Cover of Then She Was Gone
Then She Was Gone
A Novel
INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"A riveting thriller." —PopSugar

"Sharply written with twists and turns." —Library Journal

"An acutely observed family drama with bone-chilling suspense." —People
Ellie Mack was the perfect daughter. She was fifteen, the youngest of three. Beloved by her parents, friends, and teachers, and half of a teenaged golden couple. Ellie was days away from an idyllic post-exams summer vacation, with her whole life ahead of her.

And then she was gone.

Now, her mother Laurel Mack is trying to put her life back together. It's been ten years since her daughter disappeared, seven years since her marriage ended, and only months since the last clue in Ellie's case was unearthed. So when she meets an unexpectedly charming man in a café, no one is more surprised than Laurel at how quickly their flirtation develops into something deeper. Before she knows it, she's meeting Floyd's daughters—and his youngest, Poppy, takes Laurel's breath away.

Because looking at Poppy is like looking at Ellie. And now, the unanswered questions she's tried so hard to put to rest begin to haunt Laurel anew. Where did Ellie go? Did she really run away from home, as the police have long suspected, or was there a more sinister reason for her disappearance? Who is Floyd, really? And why does his daughter remind Laurel so viscerally of her own missing girl?
INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"A riveting thriller." —PopSugar

"Sharply written with twists and turns." —Library Journal

"An acutely observed family drama with bone-chilling suspense." —People
Ellie Mack was the perfect daughter. She was fifteen, the youngest of three. Beloved by her parents, friends, and teachers, and half of a teenaged golden couple. Ellie was days away from an idyllic post-exams summer vacation, with her whole life ahead of her.

And then she was gone.

Now, her mother Laurel Mack is trying to put her life back together. It's been ten years since her daughter disappeared, seven years since her marriage ended, and only months since the last clue in Ellie's case was unearthed. So when she meets an unexpectedly charming man in a café, no one is more surprised than Laurel at how quickly their flirtation develops into something deeper. Before she knows it, she's meeting Floyd's daughters—and his youngest, Poppy, takes Laurel's breath away.

Because looking at Poppy is like looking at Ellie. And now, the unanswered questions she's tried so hard to put to rest begin to haunt Laurel anew. Where did Ellie go? Did she really run away from home, as the police have long suspected, or was there a more sinister reason for her disappearance? Who is Floyd, really? And why does his daughter remind Laurel so viscerally of her own missing girl?
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About the Author-
  • Lisa Jewell is the internationally bestselling author of seventeen novels, including the New York Times bestsellers The Family Upstairs and Then She Was Gone, as well as Watching You and I Found You. Her novels have sold more than 4.5 million copies across the English-speaking world, and her work has also been translated into twenty-five languages. Connect with her on Twitter @LisaJewellUK, on Instagram @LisaJewellUK, and on Facebook @LisaJewellOfficial.
Reviews-
  • Library Journal

    November 15, 2017

    Ten years after her beloved 15-year-old daughter Ellie disappeared, Laurel is charmed when she meets Floyd at a cafe, surprised when her feelings for him grow deeper, and absolutely shocked to meet Floyd's daughter, who looks exactly like Ellie. From the New York Times best-selling author of I Found You.

    Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Publisher's Weekly

    January 29, 2018
    More than a whiff of The Lovely Bones wafts through this haunting domestic noir from bestseller Jewell (I Found You). The disappearance of beautiful, brainy 15-year-old Ellie Mack in May 2005 from her north London neighborhood takes a terrible toll on her parents and siblings, even a decade later. Most profoundly affected is her now-divorced mother, Laurel. After a shocking development in the cold case jolts Laurel from her lonely limbo, Laurel stuns herself by agreeing to dinner with a man she meets in a café, genial author Floyd Dunn, and quickly falls into a relationship with him and the younger of his daughters, precocious nine-year-old Poppy—who reminds Laurel eerily in so many ways of Ellie. But then unsettling coincidences start to emerge, most notably Laurel’s discovery that Floyd’s former partner, Noelle Donnelly, who he claims vanished five years earlier after dumping Poppy with him, was Ellie’s math tutor. Skillfully told by several narrators (some of them ghostly), Jewell’s gripping novel transcends its plot improbabilities to connect with an emotionally resonant story of loss, grief, and renewal.

  • Kirkus

    February 15, 2018
    Ten years after her teenage daughter went missing, a mother begins a new relationship only to discover she can't truly move on until she answers lingering questions about the past.Laurel Mack's life stopped in many ways the day her 15-year-old daughter, Ellie, left the house to study at the library and never returned. She drifted away from her other two children, Hanna and Jake, and eventually she and her husband, Paul, divorced. Ten years later, Ellie's remains and her backpack are found, though the police are unable to determine the reasons for her disappearance and death. After Ellie's funeral, Laurel begins a relationship with Floyd, a man she meets in a cafe. She's disarmed by Floyd's charm, but when she meets his young daughter, Poppy, Laurel is startled by her resemblance to Ellie. As the novel progresses, Laurel becomes increasingly determined to learn what happened to Ellie, especially after discovering an odd connection between Poppy's mother and her daughter even as her relationship with Floyd is becoming more serious. Jewell's (I Found You, 2017, etc.) latest thriller moves at a brisk pace even as she plays with narrative structure: The book is split into three sections, including a first one which alternates chapters between the time of Ellie's disappearance and the present and a second section that begins as Laurel and Floyd meet. Both of these sections primarily focus on Laurel. In the third section, Jewell alternates narrators and moments in time: The narrator switches to alternating first-person points of view (told by Poppy's mother and Floyd) interspersed with third-person narration of Ellie's experiences and Laurel's discoveries in the present. All of these devices serve to build palpable tension, but the structure also contributes to how deeply disturbing the story becomes. At times, the characters and the emotional core of the events are almost obscured by such quick maneuvering through the weighty plot.Dark and unsettling, this novel's end arrives abruptly even as readers are still moving at a breakneck speed.

    COPYRIGHT(2018) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    Starred review from March 1, 2018
    Laurel Mack's world was destroyed when her 15-year-old daughter, Ellie, disappeared on her way to the library. Ellie, a bright, happy girl whose only care in the world was having to be tutored to pass her math exams, seemingly vanished from her suburban London neighborhood?CCTV cameras show nothing, and the police have no leads, so she's chalked up as a runaway. But 10 years later, after the family has fractured, remains are found along with Ellie's belongings, putting the case to rest. Laurel still has questions but is desperate to finally move on, so when charmingly geeky Floyd comes into her life, she latches on to him. But Floyd's young daughter, Poppy, bears an uncanny resemblance to Ellie?and, strangely, he has a connection to Ellie's former math tutor. Jewell teases out her twisty plot at just the right pace, leaving readers on the edge of their seats. There will surely be comparisons to novels such as Emma Donoghue's Room (2010) as well as all of the Girl thrillers, but Jewell's latest really isn't at all derivative. Her multilayered characters are sheer perfection, and even the most astute thriller reader won't see where everything is going until the final threads are unknotted. Those few who do guess early won't mind, as the pace and prose will keep them hooked.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2018, American Library Association.)

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Then She Was Gone
Then She Was Gone
A Novel
Lisa Jewell
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