“Girl Last Seen” by Nina Laurin
4.5/5 Stars Not Recommended for Children.
“Girl Last Seen” by Nina Laurin is a thrilling, dark novel that you have no idea how it will end. For those of you who like cheerful “happily ever after” stories this is not a book you should pick up. I really enjoyed how the story grips you and have to see the end. The main character, Laine, is a victim of an abduction and rape when she was ten years old. Thirteen years later a ten year old girl meeting her same description disappears. Fearing that it is the same monster that kidnapped her, she teams up with the same officer that found her on the side of the road after her abductor released her. The police and parents of the abducted girl hope that Laine will remember something from her experience with her tormentor that will aide in the investigation.
I am not one to pick up a gory, dark or depressing book, let alone enjoy it. Yes, this is a dark novel. Yes, it isn’t pretty and it’s kind of messed up but it seems real and you want them to find that monster that tortures ten year old girls in his basement and put him away for the rest of his life. This novel it narrated by Laine as she attempts to function in normal society; believing that she is “tarnished”. She suffers from her past and anxiety associated with it but even though she is willing to give up on herself, her body won’t.
Laine is a stubborn and fighting with her past every step of the way. Her life never seems to go right. Then she is called to help find the monster that destroyed her life and she is reunited with the first person who showed her love, Detective Sean Ortiz. As they investigate the life of the disappeared girl, they dig up more dirt than answers and Laine discovers more horrible details about her past.
All the while, you are trying to figure out who this monster could be, how could these people do this and you see the depth of human kindness, even for someone who is “tarnished”. This novel is a gripping mystery that will have you turning pages and wondering who could have kidnapped these girls. Though this isn’t the kind of happy ending you read about in fairytales, there is justice and overall a “happy ending”. If dark mysteries are up your alley, you’ll love this.