Sophie Hannah is definitely one of those authors that I see around the blogosphere a lot. She writes mysteries, and it seems like everyone has read and enjoyed her books. I’ve had her on my list for quite some time, and started with Little Face, the first in a series that features the same pair of law enforcement characters. However, this just wasn’t a book for me. While I gave it a 3* rating overall for being a decent mystery (except for the parts where it wasn’t), there were just too many things that left me feeling confused, and too many moments of cruelty and bizarre abuse for me to really categorize this as an enjoyable read. I didn’t really care for the two detectives at the center of the mystery, either, finding both of them quite annoying, so I don’t really see myself pursuing this series any further, although if someone out there really loves these books and thinks they get better, I’m open to having my mind changed!!
The basic premise is quite creepy – two weeks ago, Alice had a baby. Today, she’s leaving the baby for the first time. Alice goes out for a bit of a break while her husband, Charlie, watches the baby. Just a couple of hours go by before Alice’s return, but when she comes home she’s convinced that the baby in her home isn’t actually her baby – someone has kidnapped Alice’s baby and left an unknown infant instead.
Pacing in this book is excellent. I never knew whether Alice was reliable or not. The whole situation just seems so bizarre, yet what does Alice have to gain by making up this kind of story? As things began to unwind, I still wasn’t sure how it was going to play out. Like I said, not a bad mystery – my issues were more with characters/actions than they were with plot/pacing. So, spoiler complaints below the cut, and 3* for Little Face.