Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Review - Then She Was Gone

Title:   Then She Was Gone
Author:  Lisa Jewell
Genre:   Psychological Thriller
Publisher:   Atria Books
Format:  Audiobook
No. of Pages:  359
Date of Publication:  April 17, 2018
My Rating:   5 Stars


She was fifteen, her mother's golden girl. She had her whole life ahead of her. And then, in the blink of an eye, Ellie was gone.

It’s been ten years since Ellie disappeared, but Laurel has never given up hope of finding her daughter.

And then one day a charming and charismatic stranger called Floyd walks into a café and sweeps Laurel off her feet.

Before too long she’s staying the night at this house and being introduced to his nine year old daughter.

Poppy is precocious and pretty - and meeting her completely takes Laurel's breath away.

Because Poppy is the spitting image of Ellie when she was that age. And now all those unanswered questions that have haunted Laurel come flooding back.

What happened to Ellie? Where did she go?

Who still has secrets to hide?


When Lisa Jewell pens a story, she doesn't miss a punch. This certainly proves to be the case with Then She Was Gone.

It has been ten years when Ellie, then fifteen, disappeared. Her mother, Laurel, has had a difficult time dealing with it, although she has another daughter and a son. Laurel is surprised when a nice man, named Floyd, approaches her and they eventually start dating. It just might be that Laurel can begin life anew.

When she meets his daughter, however, it is Ellie's face that she sees. She is beside herself with shock, although she does try to hide it. Shaking it off, her relationship with Floyd grows.

Page after page the story unwinds in chilling fashion. Not only do we have Laurel's point of view, but we have Floyd's Ellie's and that of the psychopath behind Ellie's disappearance.

For the sake of not spoiling the book with this review, I do not think there is much more I can say than to warn the reader to grab ahold of their chair when the hard-hitting, emotionally packed conclusion arrives.


Lisa was born in London in 1968. Her mother was a secretary and her father was a textile agent and she was brought up in the northernmost reaches of London with her two younger sisters. She was educated at a Catholic girls’ Grammar school in Finchley. After leaving school at sixteen she spent two years at Barnet College doing an arts foundation course and then two years at Epsom School of Art & Design studying Fashion Illustration and Communication.

She worked for the fashion chain Warehouse for three years as a PR assistant and then for Thomas Pink, the Jermyn Street shirt company for four years as a receptionist and PA. She started her first novel, Ralph’s Party, for a bet in 1996. She finished it in 1997 and it was published by Penguin books in May 1998. It went on to become the best-selling debut novel of that year.

She has since written a further nine novels, as is currently at work on her eleventh.

She now lives in an innermost part of north London with her husband Jascha, an IT consultant, her daughters, Amelie and Evie and her silver tabbies, Jack and Milly.

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