In one terrible moment, paramedic Sophie Phillips's life is ripped apart – her police officer husband, Chris, is shot on their doorstep and their ten-month-old son, Lachlan, is abducted from his bed. Suspicion surrounds Chris as he is tainted with police corruption, but Sophie believes the attack is much more personal, a consequence of her own actions.
While Chris is in hospital and the police, led by Detective Ella Marconi, mobilise to find their colleague's child, Sophie's desperation compels her to search for Lachlan herself. She enlists her husband's partner, Angus Arendson, in the hunt for her son, but will the history they share and her raw maternal instinct lead to an even greater tragedy? - book jacket
Wow this is certainly one book that lives up to its title. Frantic is the pace of this novel and my racing heart as I galloped through the story with my heart in my mouth, unable to turn the pages fast enough. What an awesome debut novel by Australian author Katherine Howell.
Katherine obviously writes what she knows and loves, taking the reader on an intense and realistic ride. I Loved the paramedic work references, the Sydney setting and the characters, particularly Sophie. The narrative moves from the perspective of mother Sophie, father Chris and investigating officer Detective Ella Marconi, contributing to the feverish pace while still allowing for plot development. The stresses of Sophie's job as a paramedic really come through on the page and I found her emotions throughout the story compelling and entirely relatable. The distress, guilt, panic, the rash decisions & horrifying consequences all worked to show the very believable lengths a mother will go to for her child.
Hold your breath and hang on tight for this read!!
I will definitely be tracking down this author's next work, The Darkest Hour published 2008 and waiting on Cold Justice, due for Australian release in Feb 2010.
Katherine Howell is a former ambulance officer and her first published work, Frantic won the 2008 Davitt Award for best crime novel by an Australian author. To learn more about this author and her work visit http://www.katherinehowell.com/
This month on The Eclectic Reader you could win Blood Promise by Richelle Mead OR Destined For An Early Grave by Jeaniene Frost OR The Other Tudors by Philippa Jones. Check this blog post for details. International entrants welcome.