‘My name is Phoebe Locklear. I think I’m your daughter.’
I rehearse the words as I walk up the path, clutching a faded old photograph of a little girl with thick dark hair.
When I knock, the door opens, and there she is: the woman I believe is my mother. The woman whose five-year-old daughter disappeared fifteen years ago.
Had I known what would happen next, would I have knocked on that door? Would I take back the lives I’ve destroyed?
But now that I’ve started, there’s no going back. I can’t stop until I find out who I really am.
Even if the truth could kill me.
Twisty, addictive and utterly unputdownable, Gone Before asks what happens when your whole life turns out to be a lie. Perfect for fans of Lisa Jewell, Gone Girl and The Silent Patient.
When Phoebe Locklear lands from Botswana after losing the only mother she knew, she’s desperate to make contact with her ‘real’ mother, Kay Duncan. And she believes she has connected, only to have everything turned upside down when the DNA tests establishes she not the kidnapped ‘Maya Duncan’ after all. What follows is Phoebe’s determined pursuit of the truth to find out who she really is? Did her ‘foster’ mother, Roz lie to her. But how come she has memories of her ‘real’ mother and step father?
As she begins to uncover layer upon layer of this story, she has to face the death of Kay and Kay’s bandmate, and feel the guilt that she indirectly caused their deaths. The author takes us on a real thriller of a ride which includes blackmail, murder, deceit, a cult with a crazy leader and Phoebe herself being the victim of a murder attempt.
The book was unputdownable! Just when you thought you’d figured out the plot there was another twist. I thoroughly enjoyed this book from Sam Hepburn and will be looking out for more of her writing.
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Meet the author
Sam Hepburn read modern languages at Cambridge University and, after a brief spell in advertising, joined the BBC as a General Trainee. She worked as a documentary maker for twenty years and was one of the commissioners for the launch of BBC Four. Since then, she has written several books, including psychological thrillers Gone Before and Her Perfect Life, and novels for young adults and children. She won the 2017 CWA Margery Allingham Short Story award and has been nominated for several other prestigious prizes, including the CILIP Carnegie Medal for her YA thrillers.
Sam has worked and travelled widely in Africa and the Middle East, and is a trustee of the Kenyan’s children’s charity, I Afrika. She now lives in London with her husband and children.
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I received an ARC of Gone Before from the publisher, Bookouture, through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.