I’m not safe – you have to help me…’
Little Lorna Bell is from a notorious family on a rundown estate. Everyone thinks she’s a nasty piece of work. The schoolchildren call her a thief. But Lorna’s hair is matted, her shoes pinch her feet and school teacher Claire Penny can’t help herself; some kids just need a bit more support, a bit more love, than the rest.
As the bond between teacher and pupil grows stronger, Claire sees Lorna’s bruises, and digs to uncover the disturbing tale behind them. Heartbroken, Claire knows she has to act. She must make Lorna safe. Just when Claire thinks she has protected Lorna, a chance encounter brings enigmatic stranger Marianne Cairns into their lives. Marianne seems generous and kind but there is something about her story that doesn’t quite add up. Why does she feel so at home, and why is Lorna suddenly so unsettled?
Claire has risked everything to save Lorna. But what can save Claire from the shocking truth?
An utterly unputdownable and darkly compelling read that will have fans of The Girl on the Train, The Sister, and Gone Girl absolutely hooked.
I know that 2017 is still new but I have to say this, Bad Little Girl by Frances Vick is my biggest surprise so far this year. I really didn’t know what to expect when I picked this book. The first chapters were so slow that I started doubting whether I had made the right decision requesting for the ARC. However, a few chapters in and things suddenly changed. OMG, things really started happening and I found myself totally hooked to the story. I was reading it at every chance I got. At home, during my coffee break, lunch hour at work. I was so hooked. I knew something bad was going to happen and I kinda had a feeling what it was but I couldn’t look away. Seriously though, I wish I could write this review in my first language, Swahili, and then maybe I can do justice to this review and accurately explain just how much I loved it. Anyway, let me try calm down and explain why I liked it so much.
Okay, so let me start by briefly explaining what the book is about. Claire is Lorna’s teacher. She notices that the student has a few issues especially with fitting in with other students. Soon, she notices that Lorna’s issues go beyond what was happening at school. Claire becomes more invested in the student and starts following up on her. What happens next is just crazy and it gets crazier with each chapter as the truth emerges. I remember feeling unsettled as I read this book. The creepiness wouldn’t go away. I just sat there in disbelief but unable to look away. It was addictive. The villain was unexpected. It wasn’t the usual kind of villain which made them even scarier. Seriously, I can’t even explain just how chilling they were.
I’d like to tell you more about the characters but I don’t want to ruin the book for you. I was so surprised by the events that took place because I went in with little knowledge about the book and I think that this is the best way to read it. Let me mention though that I really liked Claire. I am not a mother yet but I like the little humans. I just like everything about them. Have you ever had a child hug and it just totally melts your heart? So I was drawn to Claire because she cared about the kid and I supported the actions that she took because I think I would have done the same thing. I sympathized with Lorna from the first page. I thought that she was quite endearing with all the little things that she used to do for Claire. There are scenes that made me teary like Lorna hugging Claire when she found her looking sad. I was so invested in the two characters so when the mayhem started, it caught me unaware. I actually felt betrayed. Damn. I thought I knew these people.
The ending of the book is just as creepy as the rest of it. It’s the kind of ending that makes you feel like someone is watching you. Like you need to lock the doors, close the curtains and then you start looking at certain ‘humans’ with a new perspective. Seriously though, this book had one of the creepiest, most disturbing villains.
You need to read this. If you are looking for a suspenseful, creepy read then yeah, you should get it. Definitely recommended to all fans of psychological thrillers.