Title: Cold Valley Nightmare (Lucy Hush #2)
Author: Anna Willett
A troubled past resurfaces when an investigative journalist agrees to help find a missing child.
The Australian bush is unforgiving, and there is not much hope when a four-year-old boy, Clem, apparently disappears into it without a trace. When the police begin to suspect the boy’s step-father, his lawyer hires Damon, a specialist private investigator, to help defend him.
No stranger to missing person cases, Damon agrees to let his partner, Lucy, interview the family. There she finds a strong connection to the boy’s mother, and determines to find Clem no matter the cost. Having lost her own parents young, and nearly lost her brother, she hopes it will help her to exorcise her own demons.
Refusing to believe that Clem is dead, Lucy begins a search that will take her into the seedier side of a rural community with many secrets. In so doing, she will stumble across criminal activity that will put her in serious danger.
But it will also stretch her fledgling relationship to Damon, the only person she has ever really trusted. Can she find Clem? Can she find an inner peace? Can she let Damon in?
If you enjoy suspense thrillers you are in for a treat with COLD VALLEY NIGHTMARE. It is a standalone, but you can also read about Lucy’s backstory in the bestseller SMALL TOWN NIGHTMARE, which is FREE with Kindle Unlimited and available in paperback.
Anna Willett is the author of several crime thrillers set around Perth in the south west of Australia. The rugged, uncompromising landscape is a graphic backdrop for stories that explore tested relationships, cruelty and revenge, and human resolve.
When 4-year-old Clem disappears, police immediately look to the stepfather who was responsible. What seems like an open and closed case has secrets lurking just beneath the surface. There are plenty of dangerous people involved with Clem’s mother and stepfather. With the clock ticking on Clem’s life, both Lucy (a journalist) and Damon (a PI hired by Clem’s stepfather) are desperate to get to the truth before it’s too late.
I love the vivid descriptions of western Australia. Even though I’m not familiar with the imagery myself, the author made it easy to imagine just how bad it could be to lose such a young child in this environment. Miss Willett is also skilled at weaving real human lessons into her stories, things that will stay with you long after you’ve finished reading the book.
Intense and engaging, this is one thriller that’ll stick with you.
This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.