Friday, 24 August 2012

Finders Keepers by Belinda Bauer

We first came across the town of Shipton and its surrounding Exmoor landscape in Bauer’s debut novel, Blacklands. With her third book, the author revisits the town and inflicts on the locals another psychopath, this time a child abductor. When Jess Took goes missing from a horse-box while her father is leading a fox hunt, the perpetrator leaves the note: You don’t love her.

There follows a spate of further abductions, and more notes. The police are called in and expect to find bodies any day, but none turn up. DI Reynolds is hoping to make a breakthrough quickly – his credibility is on the line and he is anxious to appease the townsfolk, while worrying about his new hair transplant. Local bobby, Jonas Holly, has just been cleared for active duty following a harrowing serial killer case and personal tragedy that have left him potentially unstable.

Young Steven Lamb, a central character in Blacklands, is worried too – about the motorbike he bought which is all in pieces, about what the new girl at school thinks about him and also about his brother Davey, who wants to catch the child abductor and claim the reward.

The reader is well entertained following the lives of the characters, the tension mounting all the while as the child abductor begins to lose control. Belinda Bauer manages to instil humour and human interest while delivering a gripping storyline to reach an ending that is both unexpected and shocking. My only concern is just how many psychopathic criminals can a small town endure without compromising the logic of this series? If you can put that aside, this is a great read from a talented author. ...Posted by Paige Turner

Author Notes  


Belinda Bauer grew up in England and South Africa. She has worked as a journalist and screenwriter and her script The Locker Room earned her the Carl Foreman/Bafta Award for Young British Screenwriters.

Her debut novel Blacklands earned her the CWA Gold Dagger for Best Crime Novel of the Year. She lives in Wales and is currently working on her next novel.

She was longlisted for the Crime Writers’ Association Dagger in the Library Award 2012 and Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year 2012.

Belinda Bauer's website:
...and Facebook page:

Hot off Facebook! Belinda's new novel, Rubbernecker,  is due for publication in January 2013.

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