I picked Snap up by chance on our way down to Bishop’s Castle for my “sister-out-law’s” birthday end of August. The only regret I have is to have waited so long to read it.

Definitely  September’s favourite…. no, Snap is my favourite suspense/crime novel I’ve read this year – and quite possibly the best I’ve ever read.

Although admittedly I have only “properly” got into reading over the past few months and I’m sure there are some that match the love I feel for this one very closely, but my memory fails me.

Snap by Belinda Bauer
5 out of 5
Published in 2018 by Transworld Publishers Ltd
You can order a copy from AmazonWaterstones

Blurb: Snap decisions can be dangerous…
On a stifling summer’s day, eleven-year-old Jack and his two sisters sit in their broken-down car, waiting for their mother to come back and rescue them. Jack’s in charge, she’d said. I won’t be long.
But she doesn’t come back. She never comes back. And life as the children know it is changed for ever.
Three years later, Jack is still in charge – of his sisters, of supporting them all, of making sure nobody knows they’re alone in the house, and – quite suddenly – of finding out the truth about what happened to his mother…

My thoughts: Your girl got slightly emotional at the end. Nearly turned the book around to start again once I finished the very last page. My Belinda Bauer collection needs to be updated, and fast!. If Snap is anything to go by she might just be one of my favourite authors!!

I will be unable to review the book without spoiling it, so be warned.

*********** SPOILER ALERT***********

20 August 2018, the car with Eileen Bright and her three children broke down on the southbound of the M5 motorway.

“Jack’s in charge, stay in the car,” she said, “I won’t be long.” setting off to walk to the emergency phone. She never returned and life as the children knew it was never going to be the same.

After an hour, Jack decided they will need to go look for their mum. Off they went following mum’s footsteps- Jack 11, Joy 9 and 2 year old Merry on Jack’s lap refusing to walk.

No-one stopped their cars to check if the children walking on the hard shoulder of the motorway were okay.

This reminded me of myself when I was about Jack’s age. Coincidentally roughly the same year in the late 90s. I decided to take a 6 mile walk out of town to my nan’s workplace as I had lost the keys to the house. No-one stopped for me either.

Fast forward three years, Jack, now a 14 year old angered by grief and abandonment by their dad, had become a thief to feed his younger siblings. He broke into houses, looking for anything that could be sold and ate and slept in people’s beds. Jack became known by the police force as Goldilocks.

One night, whilst raiding another house for items to sell, he stumbled across a knife. He was certain his mother was killed by the same exact knife.

What followed was Jack’s desperate journey to get police involved to look into his mother’s unsolved case to bring her murderer to justice. Even if it meant he was going to be put to prison for B&E as Goldilocks.

Further thoughts: Have you ever disliked a character only to change your mind as you continue reading? Detective Chief Inspector John Marvel is mine. I really didn’t like the “know-it-all” character, but warmed to him the more I got to know him.

My favourite character is Jack. I can’t even begin to imagine what he would have gone through at his tender age. Trying his hardest to pretend to the outside world that everything is okay. Keeping the Social Services at bay to avoid losing the remaining of his family to the system and being the one “in charge”.

The fact that the murderer was known half way through made the narrative more enjoyable. The suspense was even better knowing who the police is trying to catch. I crossed my fingers and toes each time the police tried to find something to physically tie them to the crime.

I can’t even give it my usual rating – it was AMAZING out of 5 stars.

Kat x



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