17 March 2012

Review: GONE, Mo Hayder

  • Format: Kindle
  • File Size: 604 KB
  • Print Length: 415 pages
  • Publisher: Transworld Digital (March 2, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003ARUTQ0
  • Source: I bought it
  • #5 in the Jack Caffery series
 Synopsis (Amazon)

Night is falling as murder detective Jack Caffrey arrives to interview the distraught victim of a car-jacking. What he hears horrifies him. The car was taken by force, and on the back seat was a passenger. An eleven-year-old girl. Who is still missing. Before long the jacker starts to communicate with the police. And Caffrey becomes certain that he is planning to take another car. And another child. Who is the car-jacker? How is he choosing his targets? And - most urgent of all - can Caffrey find the child? Before it’s too late …

Jack Caffery (from Fantastic Fiction)
1. Birdman (1999)
2. The Treatment (2001)
3. Ritual (2008)
4. Skin (2009)
5. Gone (2010)

My take

This book had me on the edge of my seat as it raced towards its conclusion. There aren't many books that have done that to me recently.

I have read an earlier title in the series recently  (RITUAL) and I remember being gobsmacked by BIRDMAN long before I began blogging. Now I'm going to go looking for the two that I have missed reading, THE TREATMENT and SKIN.

Detective Inspector Jack Caffery of Bristol's Major Crime Investigation Unit is an impressive very believable character. He has spent 18 years with the Murder Squad and his investigations are marked with thoroughness. Unfortunately those who work for him don't always think outside the square. There are two other interesting characters in the series: police diver Sergeant Flea Marley and a vagrant whom the locals call the Walking Man. Caffery and the Walking Man are connected because both have a close relative who disappeared when young.

The kidnapping of a child is always a traumatic subject and we see the cases in GONE both from the police point of view as they desperately search for clues, and from the parent's points of view as they try to come to terms with what has happened. There's a little touch of the paranormal in a couple of places, but who knows where inspiration and intuition comes from?

This was an excellent read, one of my best so far this year.

My rating: 5.0

GONE has been shortlisted for Best Novel in this year's Edgar Awards.
Reviews of Mo Hayder titles in MiP


kathy d. said...

Maybe I'll try this book. The only one I've read by Mo Hayder is The Devil of Nanking (Tokyo), which was about Japan's invasion of Nanking, China, in 1937. While it was very well researched and compelling to read, the violence was very graphic. Of course, it portrayed a brutal genocidal attack, which killed over 100,000 people and injured countless others, however, I had to skim a lot of the book, but I learned a lot about this catastrophe.
I've wanted to read another of her books, so maybe I'll read thi sone.

Kerrie said...

I'll be interested in how much you like it Kathy

Charmaine Clancy said...

I saw the trailer for this book some time ago - it was very intense!
Wagging Tales

raidergirl3 said...

Should I read in order? This sounds so fantastic, but will it be even better if it's the fifth Jack book I read?
I was all set to request at the library, but then I stopped, and wondered about starting at the beginning, which made me think about starting a new series, when Jo Nesbo is yelling at me to keep reading. Arg!

Maxine Clarke said...

I thought Tokyo was very good for the first 3/4 or so, I did not like the thriller part of the plot at the end, which is based on the author's experience of being a "hostess" in Japan. I also think her debut, Birdman, was innovative and effective. Her other books have been less successful for me, but I do think she's returned to form in Gone, it is the best of the "Flea" series, perhaps for one reason because it is not so much about the supernatural, curses, etc, as in previous Jack/Flea books.

BTW you get the full Jack Caffrey back-story in Birdman and The Treatment. This is not necessary to read the Jack/Flea series but does explain some aspects of Jack's actions and personality.

kathy d. said...

Just one question: Is this super-violent and gratuitous? I'm asking as I got nightmares from The Devil of Nanking. It was rough.

Intense is ok, but not gratuitous, sadistic violence.

Please let me know.


Kerrie said...

not particularly violent Kathy

samantha.1020 said...

I just finished this one and loved it as well! I had no idea that it was a part of a series. I can't wait to go back and read the 1st book! I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed it as much as I did :)

carol said...

I've never read anything by Mo Hayder, but this sounds like a series I would enjoy. Do they need to be read in order or can I just jump right in wherever?

Kerrie said...

I'd favour reading them in order Carol


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