Publication date: June 27, 2017
Publisher: Berkley Books
Source: Publisher for an honest review
As an old house is demolished in a gentrifying section of London, a workman discovers a tiny skeleton, buried for years. For journalist Kate Waters, it s a story that deserves attention. She cobbles together a piece for her newspaper, but at a loss for answers, she can only pose a question: Who is the Building Site Baby?
As Kate investigates, she unearths connections to a crime that rocked the city decades earlier: A newborn baby was stolen from the maternity ward in a local hospital and was never found. Her heartbroken parents were left devastated by the loss.
But there is more to the story, and Kate is drawn house by house into the pasts of the people who once lived in this neighborhood that has given up its greatest mystery. And she soon finds herself the keeper of unexpected secrets that erupt in the lives of three women and torn between what she can and cannot tell.
When I heard Fiona Barton had a new book coming out, I was eager to read it because I loved The Widow so much. Let's begin by stating that The Child did not disappoint. I have figured out that Barton is a smart and twisty author. I love the complexity and pacing of her writing.
In The Child, Kate Waters is trying to remain relevant and compete with the youngsters writing the online content for the paper. She is having a difficult time adjusting to the 24/7 news cycle of the internet and isn't particularly happy with some of the quality of what is being put out there. She still wants the old-school story about real news that requires actual research and skill - not just fluff.
When she spots a small write up about the tiny skeleton uncovered at a building site, she knows there is much more to this, and she won't stop until she figures it out.
The reader is also introduced to Emma and Angela - each has a strong emotional reaction to the small write up about the skeleton being found. It is a slow and complex process to find out what each of the women's past trauma is. As always, Barton creates characters that I found to be interesting and sympathetic. I really like that the reader gets to follow Kate as she slowly works through all the leads and dead-ends to pull all the pieces together. There are major plot twists and surprises along to way.
As usual, Kate is the catalyst for the unraveling of secrets and sins and long-buried pain. The way the mysteries unfold was very enjoyable to read - especially since I felt that justice was served in the end. While I did guess one of the big reveals, that didn't deter from my enjoyment because I was so anxious to see just how it was going to happen.
I really enjoyed The Child and have been recommending it to everyone. I try to avoid giving too much of a description since half the fun of reading one of Barton's books is just reading with no idea of what to expect -- because she is great at keeping the reader on their toes.
Barton’s 2016 debut, The Widow, was an instant global bestseller, captivating readers around the world and settingthe publishing industry abuzz.
The highly-anticipated release of THE CHILD (Berkley Hardcover; June 27, 2017) reaffirms Barton’s growing reputation as a writer of rich, character-driven suspense novels. Like Tana French, Louise Penny, and Megan Abbott, Barton’s stories do more than thrill: they explore the complexities of a changing world.
The Widow delved into the secrets that exist within a marriage and the reporter’s role as voyeur. Here Barton continues to mine those themes. THE CHILD tackles the 24/7 news cycle, and lays bare the intricacies of a different but equally fascinating relationship—mother and child.
Though THE CHILD delivers an evocative look at the changing face of journalism, and a delicious plot twist, it isthe characters’ haunting and rich emotional lives that set Barton apart and confirm her stature as a crime novelist of the first order.