The tone of the novel is quite bleak, and by the end it seems Frieda is totally depressed.
She feels so troubled that she eventually goes to therapy. The resolution of the crimes was surprising, especially the one about the missing girls. Ruth Lennox’s murderer turned out to be the person I suspected, and the murder of Zach Greene was linked but not the way I thought. It was Russell Lennox who killed the young man, but not for the reasons he put forward, but to protect his son, because Zach could destroy his alibi. Ted’s alibi was his sister who claimed she had been with him at the time of the crime whereas in reality she had been with her boyfriend Zach. Frieda discovers the truth when she sees Ted’s drawing for her exam and in the drawing there is the object that killed her mother, so Ted had it with him. So Frieda talks to the boy and persuades him to give himself away. Frieda does what she believes is right even though her actions prove to set Chloe against her.
As for the other crime, I didn’t expect Lila’s sweet father and his friend to have kidnapped and killed all those girls. It is sad that Jim Fearby was killed after discovering the truth, and he didn’t live to see the fruit of his discovery. Thanks to Frieda and Josef, the two men were found out and apprehended. Josef gets hurt when Lila’s father, Larry Dawes, attacks him, but thankfully, Frieda gets there in time. It is lucky that the other missing girl is found alive and could be rescued. Yet, the police later finds the bodies of all the other girls buried in the man’s garden. How terrible! Karlsson has to eat humble pie and apologise to Frieda for doubting her in the first place, and even though her and Jim Fearby’s first conclusion was wrong, they were on the right scent. Josef is possibly going to get a medal or some kind of recognition, which makes him very proud. Frieda is really a clever woman, and I have to say that it is a little unbelievable that the story that her fake patient fed her could lead her to this humungous crime. It is not clear what pushed her to pursue this lead, and she admits that she wasn’t sure why she thought this was important.
I love the novel even though the tone was quite depressing. I hope that in the next instalment Frieda has cheered up a bit. At the end of this novel Sandy had come back to her but I don’t know if it is permanent or just a fleeting visit. I imagine that if he were back in her life for good, she would feel better and the ghost haunting her wouldn’t feel so terrible. In the next book Dean Reeve will still be lurking and stalking her, and I really hope that at some point she can prove that the man is alive and send the police after him.