Book Review: From The Cradle by Louise Voss and Mark Edwards

22341256Title: From The Cradle

Author: Louise Voss and Mark Edwards

Genre: Thriller, Mystery

Age Group: Adult (18+)

Rating: 2 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Review copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

The first child was taken from her house.
The second from his mother’s car.
The third from her own bedroom…
When Helen and Sean Philips go out for the evening, leaving their teenage daughter babysitting little Frankie, they have no idea that they are about to face every parent’s greatest fear.
Detective Inspector Patrick Lennon is hopeful that the three children who have been abducted in this patch of south-west London will be returned safe and well. But when a body is found in a local park, Lennon realizes that time is running out—and that nothing in this case is as it seems…
Blending police procedural with psychological thriller, From the Cradle will have every parent checking that their children are safe in their beds…then checking again.

I’ve never read anything by this author duo before, nor, do I believe, from any of the authors seperately. I went in with an open mind, not expecting much, which ended up being a good thing because the book really doesn’t offer that much either. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a good mystery, but the writing is so-so and there are too many coincidences, I knew who was the culprit from close to the start, and I just couldn’t really connect with the characters.

First thing’s first, the plot. Three little kids get abducted within a week. Helen and Sean Philips, the parents of the latest abducted child, Frankie, had left their toddler in their teenage daughter’s care while they went out for dinner. When they came back, the toddler had vanished. Now it’s up to DI Patrick Lennon and his team to find out who kidnapped the children, if the kidnappings are connected, and to, hopefully, bring the kids back to their parents alive and well.

When you say psychological thriller, I hope a book will be scary. Or at least slightly unnerving. With kids going missing, you’d think it would be a no-brainer that it would be frightening, or at least a little chilling…It’s not. And I blame most of that on the story and the characters. The story is all right, but it relies too much on coincidences. The teenagers are cliché too, and in such a way that they don’t come across as realistic anymore, especially Alice’s friends and Jérome. The adults don’t fare much better. The book is told from the POV of a lot of different characters, which makes it almost impossible to connect to any of them. We switch from Helen’s POV (mother of the abducted kid) to DI Lennon’s POV, and if it would’ve stayed with that, maybe it would’ve worked. But then we also get the POV of DI Winkler (the worst cop in history), and some other POVs thrown in (Jeromes, Larry’s at some point) and it just doesn’t add up. All those characters, and not a single one I could connect with.

Then there’s the plot. It’s all kinds of unbelievable and over the top, and it’s way too coincidental. I’m willing to believe a few coincidences, but this? No thanks.

Also, the writing style annoyed me. It focused on trivial matters way too often when heart-breaking, emotional events were going on. Some of the descriptions are so irrelevant I think they should’ve been cut. They slow down the pacing immensly too.

I wouldn’t recommend this book. I read it to the end more to satisfy my curiosity than anything else, but it’s a dissapointing read. The only good thing about it was DI Lennon, who seems a deent enough cop.



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