The Child by Fiona Barton – Review & Tour
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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…
The Child by Fiona Barton is a psychological thriller. I have read quite of few psychological thrillers this year, with many of them simply ok reads, with the authors using the same multi character POV’s, which can get confusing. The Child started off a bit slow and somewhat confusing with multiple POV’s and I thought “here we go again”. But things changed about a ¼ into the story, when it caught hold of me, and I could not let go; that being said, I loved The Child.
The story revolves around the discovery of a baby’s skeleton on a construction site of a torn down building. Kate Waters, an investigative reporter, sees the notice about the finding of the “Building Site Baby” and decides to do some investigating. The POV’s of this story are Kate; Emma and Angela, with a 4th, Jude, having an occasional narration.
As Kate does her investigation, she will indirectly become involved with the other two ladies. Angela gave birth to a girl over 20 years ago, only to have her child stolen out of the hospital room. Angela and her husband Nick, have been living a nightmare all these years, especially in the beginning when Angela was an initial suspect. Emma is young lady who is emotionally disturbed, which was caused by nightmares from her harsh childhood. Emma used to live with her mother, Jude, near the site where the baby was found.
Kate is in the center of this novel, as she makes discoveries along the way that will bring her into contact with various people, including those who lived near the site all those years before. When the body has been identified as having been buried for decades, Kate will find herself researching missing children from that time period. This will bring her to Angela and her missing baby, Alice. When DNA confirms the child is Alice, both Angela and Nick feel they finally have closure. Then a strange turn of events will open the door for further investigation, as the lab informs the authorities that the things wrapped around the burial of the body was only 10 years old. Was the baby’s body moved? Will Angela get closure?
The story becomes exciting & intense as Kate’s in depth investigation will come across more secrets along the way. Emma’s emotional stability plays a major part of the ongoing story, which will introduce us to many of the other characters we get to meet, all whom were living near the site a decade earlier. I loved the character of Kate, who was an awesome and caring reporter. Her persistence and determination will help bring out the truths.
Once we get past the first quarter, which leads the way into meeting the main characters, it was such a captivating story. I could not put the book down, as I needed to know what happened. What a tangled web it weaves. To tell too much more would be spoilers.
The Child was an awesome thriller, with some great characters, and many amazing twists. Fiona Barton has written a fantastic story, and I loved how things came to a very good and satisfactory conclusion. Certainly not like most the psychological thrillers we have read that leave things to the imagination. If you enjoy thrillers, The Child is a must read.
Reviewed by Barb
Copy provided by Publisher
THE CHILD by Fiona Barton
*One of Publishers Weekly and Bustle’s Most Anticipated Books of 2017*
*A TIME “Top 10” Summer Thriller*
*Pre-publication exclusives featured by Entertainment Weekly and theSkimm*
*Praise from Lee Child, Shari Lapena, and Clare Mackintosh *
*Starred Reviews from Publishers Weekly and Library Journal*
*A June 2017 Library Reads Selection*
This summer FIONA BARTON is back with a second novel that proves lightning can strike twice.
Barton’s 2016 debut, The Widow, was an instant global bestseller, captivating readers around the world and setting the 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.
Says Barton: “The emotions, responsibilities—and the pain—of motherhood are unique to each of us with children. Ask any woman and she will have her own story to tell.”
In a working class neighborhood of London, construction workers make a grisly discovery: the long-buried remains of a baby. When a newspaper mention reveals the find, most readers barely give it a glance. But for two women, its threat to unearth hidden stories is impossible to ignore. For veteran reporter, Kate Waters (introduced in The Widow), it sparks the question “Who would bury a baby?” and starts a hunt for the truth about the nameless child. The story unfolds via the women’s alternating perspectives to eventually reveal: Who is Building Site Baby?
In fact, it was the allure of a hidden story that propelled Barton to her long-time career in news. A journalist and British Press Awards “Reporter of the Year,” she has worked at the Daily Mail and Daily Telegraph, and brings that experience to bear in her novels.
In THE CHILD she details how Kate’s lengthy investigation into Building Site Baby’s death represents a perilous breach of the newsroom’s new culture of 24/7 online news. Says Barton: “The danger for Kate is that she risks becoming one of the dinosaurs—sidelined because she is unable and unwilling to be part of the revolution. And I feel for her.”
Though THE CHILD delivers an evocative look at the changing face of journalism, and a delicious plot twist, it is the characters’ haunting and rich emotional lives that set Barton apart and confirm her stature as a crime novelist of the first order.
Visit Fiona Barton online at fionabartonauthor.com and on Twitter @figbarton. Join the conversation using #TheChild.