The Vanishing Child by Jennifer Harvey / #Review #BooksOnTour @bookouture @JenAnneHarvey1


It’s funny how one innocent decision can ruin your life. For me it was letting my son pedal away on his bike that hot summer day. He’d been so excited to go out by himself—like a big boy. And though I was usually so protective, I let him…

When Carla returns to her father’s house to care for him in his final days, she feels lost and heartbroken. So she’s glad when she meets a kindly older woman named CeCe, and they develop a warm, natural friendship. CeCe understands loss too. Because nearly forty years before her only son disappeared without trace, from this same small town.

Then, sorting through her father’s house, Carla discovers a box of diaries and newspaper clippings from the year CeCe’s son went missing. Her father was barely more than a child himself at the time, but it’s clear the disappearance affected him strongly.

The whole town is haunted by the memory of that summer: of the boy who was never found. But as Carla delves further into her father’s past she realises he may actually have known more than he has ever said—and that perhaps the answers CeCe so desperately seeks have been hidden here in this house all along.

With her father now too ill to tell his story himself, will Carla be able to discover the truth about what happened to the child who vanished—and give CeCe the answers she’s been seeking for forty years?




I really cannot imagine how it must feel like if one day your child goes missing. I know you want to protect them, but loving them means also letting them go a bit and letting them grow. You still see your little baby in them when you look at them, but they grow, little by little and become young adults. Time to give them more freedom and responsability.

Every day your child leaves home, you hope they will come home safely and they do. Until one day, they don’t…

Every minute they are gone, you die a little.

The story is interesting and not very fast paced. This is because the main character Carla did not know what to believe. In fact she did not want to believe what she discovered and she did not know whether she should go on or stop her investigation. I understood her completely. I could not make up my mind either about the culprit and kept going back and forth. What I had in mind was almost impossible, I hoped, but what really happened was even worse.

A great story about family and how you can forgive a lot as soon as you find out what happened in the past. 4 stars 

Thank you, Jennifer Harvey and Bookouture


About the author

Jennifer Harvey is a Scottish writer now living in Amsterdam.

Her short fiction has appeared in various publications in the US, Canada, and the UK and she has been shortlisted for the Bristol Prize, the Bridport Prize and placed third in the University of Sunderland Short Story Award. Her novels have been longlisted for the Bath Novel Award and her radio dramas have also won prizes and commendations from the BBC World Service.

Alongside writing, she is a Resident Reader for Carve Magazine, an editor for Carve Critiques, and serves as a member of the Editorial Board for Ellipsis Magazine. When not writing, she can be found sauntering along the Amsterdam canals, dreaming up new stories.


Author Links

Twitter:  (@JenAnneHarvey1)




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