I was recently sent a copy of Random Acts of Unkindness by Jacqueline Ward to review. I am a fan of crime thrillers but I don’t read them as often as I used to, so I was really looking forward to this one.
A gripping crime thriller with an ending you will never guess… how far would you go to find your child?
DS Jan Pearce has a big problem. Her fifteen year old son, Aiden, is missing. Jan draws together the threads of missing person cases spanning fifty years and finds tragic connections and unsolved questions.
Bessy Swain, an elderly woman that Jan finds dead on her search for Aiden, and whose own son, Thomas, was also missing, may have the answers.
Jan uses Bessy’s information and her own skills and instinct to track down the missing boys. But is it too late for Aiden?
Set in the North West of England, with the notorious Saddleworth Moor as a backdrop, Random Acts of Unkindness is a story about motherhood, love and loss and how families of missing people suffer the consequences of major crimes involving their loved ones.
Random Acts of Unkindness is the first in the DS Jan Pearce series of novels.
Jan is a detective who’s son goes missing at the age of 15, and it turns out lots of other boys around his age have been disappearing over the years too. She launches into her own investigation of his disappearance, alongside the Operation which she is involved in for the other missing boys. On her inquiries she comes across a dead body of an old woman (Bessy), a bag of money, a journal, and a dead babies skeleton. From there the story really starts unravelling…
The book is written in first person from Jan’s POV and Ward has done a good job with this. Parts of the story are told via Bessy’s journal, though when it was first introduced it was a little confusing as it was a chapter name rather than number like the beginning.
The story in general had me so engrossed, though there were a couple of inconsistencies where I had to flick back a few pages. Ward managed to keep me guessing and hanging on throughout though, also with changing my mind about certain characters. I didn’t even imagine the truth of what happened to the missing boys.
The whole story is a true horror that no parent should ever have to face, and I really found myself feeling so sad for Jan and Bessy, especially when people didn’t believe them and just brushed them off. Bessy’s story is set around the time of the Moors Murders so there are references to this too.
All in all, a brilliant thriller with many twists & turns along the way, and I hope there are more books planned as I would love to read more of Jan’s story!
Age – adult
RRP – £0.99 (kindle edition)
My rating – 4.5/5
I was sent a copy of this book free of charge to review. All thoughts and opinions are honest & my own.