Ten years ago, fifteen-year-old Scarlett Rainsford vanished while on a family holiday in Greece. Was she abducted, or did she run away? Lou Smith worked the case as a police constable, and failing to find Scarlett has been one of the biggest regrets of her career. No one is more shocked than Lou to learn that Scarlett has unexpectedly been found during a Special Branch raid of a brothel in Briarstone.
Lou and her Major Crimes team are already stretched working two troubling cases: nineteen-year-old Ian Palmer was found badly beaten; soon after, bar owner Carl McVey was found half-buried in the woods, his Rolex and money gone. While Lou tries to establish the links between the two cases, DS Sam Hollands works with Special Branch to question Scarlett. What happened to her? Where has she been until now? And why is her family—with the exception of her emotionally fragile younger sister, Juliette—less than enthusiastic about her return?
When another brutal assault and homicide are linked to the McVey murder, Lou’s cases collide, and the clues all point in one terrifying direction. As the pressure and the danger mount, it becomes clear that the silent, secretive Scarlett holds the key to everything.
Behind Closed Doors is an uncomfortable but compelling read. With a storyline to do with human trafficking I could honestly have sat down and wept in parts knowing that even though this is a work of fiction it is a very serious issue that is very much true to life.
The story alternates between current day and the lead up to Scarlett going missing, the day she goes missing and what has happened to her up to her being found.
Lou feels quite guilty having worked on the original case of missing 15 year old Scarlett so when she turns up years later Lou feels that she has to pull out all the stops to make amends for not finding her sooner.
Lou is your typical detective, she works long hours and puts her job before her own personal life and relationships. She has a heart though and finds it difficult to switch off when she gets home at the end of a long day, especially with her current case.
Sam her colleague really stood out to me through out the story, I think this is because of the bond she built up with Scarlett and you can tell how much she cares about what happens to her.
Scarlett has had to go through so much and to be honest she has been dealt a really bad hand in life. It’s hard to say to much about her without giving away spoilers but by the end I just wanted to wrap my arms around her and hold her tight and protect her from all the evil out there in the world.
The male species certainly do not come across in a good light in this book and thats the only thing I would have liked to see is maybe a stronger male character that is actually a good guy other than Lou’s boyfriend who doesn’t really have anything to with the case, otherwise this book is outstanding.
My thanks to Little, Brown Book Group UK and NetGalley for an Advanced Readers Copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
I have awarded this book 4.5/5 stars.
Behind Closed Doors is available to purchase from Amazon