Local Girl Missing
The old Victorian pier was once a thing of beauty. It's also where twenty-one-year-old Sophie Collier vanished eighteen years ago.Francesca has spent the last twenty years haunted by the disappearance of her best friend. But when she receives a phone call from Sophie's brother saying that a body has been found, she knows she can't keep hiding from what happened. With her own secrets to keep, Francesca doesn't relish the idea of digging up the past or returning to Oldcliffe. But it is time to go back to where she grew up, and it looks like she isn't the only one there hiding truths.Retail cover edition for ISBN 1405926392 (ISBN13: 9781405926393)

Local Girl Missing Details

TitleLocal Girl Missing
Author
FormatPaperback
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseAug 11th, 2016
PublisherPenguin
ISBN1405926392
ISBN-139781405926393
Number of pages368 pages
Rating
GenreMystery, Thriller, Fiction, Psychological Thriller, Suspense, Crime, Mystery Thriller, Adult, Audiobook, Contemporary

Local Girl Missing Review

  • Miriam Smith
    March 28, 2017
    I bought "Local Girl Missing" in Tesco for £2 when you purchased a daily newspaper and I have to say it was an excellent deal! I'd heard a lot about this book from online book clubs and was really looking forward to reading it. It's atmospheric, dark and at times spooky and perfect for a lazy Sunday read or a sunny afternoon in the garden.The story is told in the first person alternating between two best friends Francesca in the present time and the missing girl Sophie back in 1997 relating both I bought "Local Girl Missing" in Tesco for £2 when you purchased a daily newspaper and I have to say it was an excellent deal! I'd heard a lot about this book from online book clubs and was really looking forward to reading it. It's atmospheric, dark and at times spooky and perfect for a lazy Sunday read or a sunny afternoon in the garden.The story is told in the first person alternating between two best friends Francesca in the present time and the missing girl Sophie back in 1997 relating both of their accounts surrounding the mysterious disappearance of Sophie.I did unfortunately work out most of the plot by half way through but this didn't stop me from enjoying the book and following the outcome. I was actually quite tearful at the end as I had endeared to Sophie and had a lot of empathy for her. I wasn't taken with any of the other characters but I don't think it mattered it certainly didn't stop me from enjoying the story any the less. It's well written, easy to follow and although a slow burner keeps you turning the pages until the ending when everything finally comes together.I haven't read anything by the author Claire Douglas before but I'd be happy to read more by her in the future and will probably read her previous debut novel 'The Sisters' sometime too. 4 stars.
    more
  • Susan
    June 24, 2016
    Francesca Howe is a wealthy businesswoman when we first meet her. She lives in a nice house, in London, and helps run her parents hotel business. She is also in a rather dead end relationship and so, when the past intrudes on the present, she is convinced to return to Oldcliffe-on-Sea, the small seaside town where she grew up.Francesca (or ‘Frankie’ as she was known as a teenager) receives a call from Daniel, the brother of her childhood friend, Sophie. In 1997, Sophie went missing – all that wa Francesca Howe is a wealthy businesswoman when we first meet her. She lives in a nice house, in London, and helps run her parents hotel business. She is also in a rather dead end relationship and so, when the past intrudes on the present, she is convinced to return to Oldcliffe-on-Sea, the small seaside town where she grew up.Francesca (or ‘Frankie’ as she was known as a teenager) receives a call from Daniel, the brother of her childhood friend, Sophie. In 1997, Sophie went missing – all that was found was one of her trainers, left on the old pier where Frankie and her friends often went to spend time. Now, a body has been found which is believed to be Sophie’s, and Daniel asks Frankie to return home and help him find out what really happened all those years ago. Was Sophie’s disappearance a tragic accident, or was it murder?I really struggled with this novel. It should have been just the type of crime story I enjoy, but I found the writing style difficult. We wade through so many clichés and metaphors that it reads like a creative writing exercise at times, rather than a novel by an experienced author. As Frankie returns to Oldcliffe, it soon becomes apparent that there is a secret that Frankie and Sophie shared. Threatening notes are put through the door of the apartment where she is staying and she feels as though she is under threat.This is a novel of secrets, of the past catching up with you, and of characters who do not turn out to be what you expect. Somehow, though, it just fell very flat for me. I cannot say that I either connected with any of the characters, or had any belief in the plot by the end of the novel. I have not read the previous novel by this author, but I know it was a huge success. If you enjoyed her first book, then you may well enjoy this, but I must be honest and say it did not work for me.
    more
  • Louise Wilson
    June 16, 2016
    Twenty one year old Sophie Collier had vanished. The only thing she left behind was a trainer on an old pier. Her friend Francesca was broken hearted.A body has now been found and Francesca has come back to the seaside town she's tried to forget.Francesca wishes she had not returned as everywhere she goes there are ghosts from her past.Will the truth about what happened to Sophie finally be solved?I loved this book.I would like to thank Net Galley, Penguin UK -Michael Joseph and the author Clare Twenty one year old Sophie Collier had vanished. The only thing she left behind was a trainer on an old pier. Her friend Francesca was broken hearted.A body has now been found and Francesca has come back to the seaside town she's tried to forget.Francesca wishes she had not returned as everywhere she goes there are ghosts from her past.Will the truth about what happened to Sophie finally be solved?I loved this book.I would like to thank Net Galley, Penguin UK -Michael Joseph and the author Clare Douglas for my ARC in exchange for an honest review.
    more
  • Nicki
    April 24, 2016
    The Sisters was one of my favourite books of last year and I admit I couldn't wait to see what Claire Douglas would follow it with and if it would be just as good.I needn't have worried Local Girl Missing is absolutely brilliant,very gripping,worth far more than five stars and I am very disappointed that I have finished reading it.Frankie and Sophie have been best friends since primary school when Sophie moved to Frankie`s school after Sophie,her Mum and Sophie`s brother Daniel moved to Frankie` The Sisters was one of my favourite books of last year and I admit I couldn't wait to see what Claire Douglas would follow it with and if it would be just as good.I needn't have worried Local Girl Missing is absolutely brilliant,very gripping,worth far more than five stars and I am very disappointed that I have finished reading it.Frankie and Sophie have been best friends since primary school when Sophie moved to Frankie`s school after Sophie,her Mum and Sophie`s brother Daniel moved to Frankie`s home town of Oldcliffe On Sea to get away from Sophie`s violent father.One night twenty one year old Sophie vanishes leaving behind her trainer on the old delapitated pier.Now twenty years later Frankie gets a call from Daniel who says that a body has been found,reluctantly Frankie returns to their home town to help Daniel try to find out what happened to his sister.Soon after she starts receiving threatening letters,someone knows what happened on the pier that night and doesn't want the truth to be revealed.The story is told in alternating chapters between present day Frankie and the past where Sophie is telling what happened in the months leading up to her disappearance.I liked and felt a lot of sympathy for Sophie and her brother Daniel but from the very beginning of the story I didn't like Frankie,it's hard to explain why without giving too much away.There is a mixed bag of other characters that Frankie and Sophie interacted with throughout the book,one who is so nasty and sleazy I hated every moment he appeared in the story.All the people in Oldcliffe have their secrets and you never know who is telling the truth and who Frankie and Daniel can trust.It's a gripping,twisty story from the first word to the last,I didn't want the book to end,now I have to patiently wait and see what Claire Douglas comes up with for book 3.Many thanks to Penguin UK Michael Joseph for an ARC of this book via netgalley
    more
  • Nigel
    July 4, 2016
    Borderline 3 star really. Good premise for a story but simply unconvincing to me. In full - I like the idea of this story. A local girl goes missing, apparently falling off the local (& closed) old pier and friends and family from the time go their own ways. Then 18 years later the girl's brother phones the girl's best to say that part of a body has been found wearing a trainer that was the same as the one she had on when last seen. The book is written in two voices in fairly simple language Borderline 3 star really. Good premise for a story but simply unconvincing to me. In full - I like the idea of this story. A local girl goes missing, apparently falling off the local (& closed) old pier and friends and family from the time go their own ways. Then 18 years later the girl's brother phones the girl's best to say that part of a body has been found wearing a trainer that was the same as the one she had on when last seen. The book is written in two voices in fairly simple language. Frankie, the best friend, is the voice of now and she returns to the old home town in the westcountry ostensibly to help the brother search for evidence relating to the disappearance. Sophie, the girl who disappeared, is the voice in the past and this is written in part in diary form. My initial reaction was that the writing ok though I wasn't really gripped by the story. It was obviously one of those books where secrets from the past would be gradually revealed. It is quite apparent early on in the book that both Frankie and Sophie knew & did things at the time which were "secrets" and that Frankie probably does not want the "truth" to come out.I think the basic idea for this story was a perfectly good one and the pace kept me reading. However I simply did not find any of the characters particularly believable, real or engaging. Equally I did find some of the things that occurred more than a little incredible at times. I do see that others will find this book more appealing but for me it felt rather lightweight and lacking the real tension and edginess I would like from something that should be a thriller.Note - I received an advance digital copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a fair reviewhttp://viewson.org.uk/thriller/local-...
    more
  • Joanne Robertson
    July 7, 2016
    I read The Sisters by Claire Douglas last year and while I enjoyed it I hadn't found much to rave about in it....unlike Local Girl Missing which I have just this moment finished and thought it was stunning!Told in two timeframes, we first meet Francesca when she has a phone call to say that her best friend, who went missing 18 years ago, has been round-up body has been washed ashore. She is devastated and goes back home to be with Sophie's brother Daniel while they await an official identificati I read The Sisters by Claire Douglas last year and while I enjoyed it I hadn't found much to rave about in it....unlike Local Girl Missing which I have just this moment finished and thought it was stunning!Told in two timeframes, we first meet Francesca when she has a phone call to say that her best friend, who went missing 18 years ago, has been round-up body has been washed ashore. She is devastated and goes back home to be with Sophie's brother Daniel while they await an official identification. Then we swing back in time 18 years to Sophie, who has arrived back home after studying at uni and is back working and socialising with best friend Frankie. Back in the present, we know from the start that Frankie is hiding a secret that she shared with Sophie but someone else seems ready to taunt Frankie with it now she's back home. But as we get to uncover some uncomfortable home truths in both stories, will Sophie's killer be brought to justice? I just loved the seaside town setting here. Having lived in one myself, I know that cold and empty feeling they have out of season, when all the tourists have gone home and half the town shops close until next summer. Claire Douglas takes this and adds in a whole load of suspects who would want to hurt Sophie and a narrator with a few psychological problems of her own, to send our brains spinning into overdrive trying to work out what happened all those years ago. I found I didn't want to get too attached to any of the characters as I really didn't know who to trust! I found it very easy to visualise the area and the people that Claire was writing about and for that reason I think it would make a brilliant tv drama, it's just the sort of plot that keeps you gripped and on the edge of your seat so I think it would translate well to the small screen.I've read a lot of books with similar themes recently but this one definitely stood out for me. I think that it benefits from the "Broadchurch" effect as that's what it reminded me of. Not the story but because the setting of a small seaside holiday town, out of season and full of interesting characters with secrets to keep, really turns this into a first rate dark and atmospheric psychological suspense. Highly recommended.I received a copy of this book via netgalley in return for an unbiased review.
    more
  • Tracy Fenton
    July 9, 2016
    A gripping page-turner about revenge, secrets and love. Narrated by Sophie who died 18 years previously and Frankie the best friend who has returned to find out what really happened to Sophie, this is full of twists and turns and red herrings. Kept me guessing throughout.
    more
  • ireadnovels.wordpress.com
    October 16, 2016
    Another fabulous psychological thriller from Claire Douglas. The descriptions of places are so well described you feel like you are in that very place. Frankie and Sophie were best friends growing up. They were really close joined at the hip. Frankie moved away to London to escape the memories. Sophie went missing nearly nineteen years ago. Now her remains have been recovered, Sophie's brother invites Frankie to come back to Oldcliffe-on-Sea to help Daniel find out who killed his sister on the o Another fabulous psychological thriller from Claire Douglas. The descriptions of places are so well described you feel like you are in that very place. Frankie and Sophie were best friends growing up. They were really close joined at the hip. Frankie moved away to London to escape the memories. Sophie went missing nearly nineteen years ago. Now her remains have been recovered, Sophie's brother invites Frankie to come back to Oldcliffe-on-Sea to help Daniel find out who killed his sister on the old pier. Everyone is holding a secret. There many twist that I really enjoyed and didn't see coming. I read sisters by Claire Douglas and enjoyed that too. But Local Girl Missing had me turning the pages fast to see what will happen next. I do highly recommend this book.
    more
  • Joseph - Relax And Read Reviews
    July 27, 2016
    I've just finished reading this book and all I can say is WOW!! It's just brilliant!! "I've been running from my past. Now the past has caught up with me." Francesca (Frankie) Bloom is a successful businesswoman working in the hotel industry in London. One day she receives a call that drags her right back to the very past she tried so hard to forget. She's informed that after eighteen years missing, her best friend Sophie's body was recovered from the sea by the seaside town of Oldcliffe-On-Sea, I've just finished reading this book and all I can say is WOW!! It's just brilliant!! "I've been running from my past. Now the past has caught up with me." Francesca (Frankie) Bloom is a successful businesswoman working in the hotel industry in London. One day she receives a call that drags her right back to the very past she tried so hard to forget. She's informed that after eighteen years missing, her best friend Sophie's body was recovered from the sea by the seaside town of Oldcliffe-On-Sea, where they used to live as youngsters.With tears in her eyes and memories flooding her mind, Frankie rushes to Oldcliffe to help Daniel, Sophie's brother, identify her best friend's remains and to find the answers to the questions that have haunted her ever since that tragic night when Sophie went missing, leaving behind a shell-shocked town and just a lonely trainer perched on the old derelict pier. "I knew her. And she wasn't herself before she died... Something was wrong." What had happened to Sophie? Who or what had lured her to the old pier that night? Frankie and Daniel are determined to find out but it's soon apparent that someone is not happy with their enquiries. Someone wants to stop them and scare Frankie away. And the locals seem to know more than they are letting on. But why? Will they ever find out what really happened to Sophie? Was it just an unfortunate accident? Suicide? ... Or murder? And what secret did Sophie and Frankie share? What had they done?I was simply captivated by this book. The writing is very mature and the plot is creative, ingenious and very atmospheric with great vivid descriptions. I could visualise the seafront at Oldcliffe with its cafes and hotels, the tourists on the promenade enjoying the views. I could almost feel the rush of sea water as waves crashed on the seawalls. And I could clearly imagine the old mysterious pier shrouded by fog and battered by wind, rain and the waves. Chapters alternate between Frankie's and Sophie's povs. Frankie's chapters are set in the present when she returns to Oldcliffe. She's riddled by grief and guilt and finds herself frequently 'talking' to Sophie in her head. Sophie's chapters are from 1997 as she is 'writing' in her diary about her life and relationships.If there ever was one book that keeps you guessing till the end... This is it! I was immediately suspicious of one character, but then as the story progressed I realised that there were indeed MANY potential suspects. All characters seem shifty and to be hiding something. By the end I was totally and completely taken by surprise by the turn of events. I was NEVER expecting that finale...ever and I think it's very clever and original!I really had a great time reading this book and I highly recommend it. Well done Claire Douglas, you're a very talented lady!With huge thanks to Penguin UK, Michael Joseph for approving my request to read and review this book through Netgalley.​
    more
  • Roman Clodia
    June 22, 2016
    I like books that explore small-town secrets and for most of this book I was on-board with where it was going: then it takes a downward turn and ends with one of the most ludicrous 'twists' ever, one that had me giggling out loud at the ridiculousness of it. Douglas conjures up the atmosphere of a slightly seedy seaside town well, and there are some unexpected twists that took me pleasantly by surprise. But, gosh, that ending! No spoilers, of course, but we do have to suspend a massive amount of I like books that explore small-town secrets and for most of this book I was on-board with where it was going: then it takes a downward turn and ends with one of the most ludicrous 'twists' ever, one that had me giggling out loud at the ridiculousness of it. Douglas conjures up the atmosphere of a slightly seedy seaside town well, and there are some unexpected twists that took me pleasantly by surprise. But, gosh, that ending! No spoilers, of course, but we do have to suspend a massive amount of disbelief to swallow this... So a good start and middle but the ending lost stars from me for pure unbelievability.
    more
  • Laura
    November 18, 2016
    Told from alternating perspectives of best friends Sophie and Frankie, this is an interesting quasi-thriller documenting Sophie's disappearance in nineties Somerset. Some of the writing comes across dated and immature, particularly in Sophie's chapters, but perhaps that was the authors intention?I enjoyed the authors debut more than this - I found that mid way this story became a little repetitive and drawn out. The climax comes very late in the book and the ending is abrupt. Having said that, i Told from alternating perspectives of best friends Sophie and Frankie, this is an interesting quasi-thriller documenting Sophie's disappearance in nineties Somerset. Some of the writing comes across dated and immature, particularly in Sophie's chapters, but perhaps that was the authors intention?I enjoyed the authors debut more than this - I found that mid way this story became a little repetitive and drawn out. The climax comes very late in the book and the ending is abrupt. Having said that, it's an easy enough read and there are pieces where the author demonstrates definite promise as a thriller writer - although this book leans more towards a drama. I had multiple guesses about the twist eluded to on the cover but didn't see the ending coming! Overall, a satisfying enough read.
    more
  • Laura
    June 30, 2016
    I can't work out if I love the ending or hate it. I really enjoyed reading this book, it was twisty and unpredictable and had me on tenterhooks the whole time. Yet the ending was unexpected but felt a little implausible? Plus the explanation needs you to suspend disbelief....Yet I still really liked reading this and thoroughly enjoyed the writing style. Can't wait for the next novel from Claire!
    more
  • Sibel Hodge
    August 2, 2016
    A gripping page-turner with a gasp-worthy twist! :)
  • Kath Middleton
    July 8, 2016
    School best friends Sophie and Francesca (Frankie) managed to catch up again for the summer after they graduated, almost twenty years ago. Over that intense summer they each went through emotional turmoil. Just before they both left for jobs in London, Sophie fell to her death from the remains of their seedy hometown's derelict pier. Now Frankie, a successful businesswoman, is called back to Oldcliffe-on-Sea by Sophie's brother. Human remains have been washed up nearby and he wants Frankie to he School best friends Sophie and Francesca (Frankie) managed to catch up again for the summer after they graduated, almost twenty years ago. Over that intense summer they each went through emotional turmoil. Just before they both left for jobs in London, Sophie fell to her death from the remains of their seedy hometown's derelict pier. Now Frankie, a successful businesswoman, is called back to Oldcliffe-on-Sea by Sophie's brother. Human remains have been washed up nearby and he wants Frankie to help him identify them. He has never believed his sister's death was an accident.I enjoyed this book immensely. It's told in the present by Frankie and in the past through Sophie's diary. The two are well distinguished in style, Frankie being dramatic, filled with simile, tending towards paranoia while Sophie's diary is more youthfully breathless though often dark in content. What I particularly loved was the clever way the author gradually altered my perception of the world they'd both inhabited twenty years ago. An excellent and unusual story.Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for an advance review copy of this book.
    more
  • Zuky the BookBum
    July 5, 2016
    Thanks to Netgalley and Penguin UK - Michael Joseph for giving me the opportunity to read this.NOW AVAILABLE IN THE UK! (if you really want to bother... though most people seem to love this!)DNF at 31%I can't. I just... I just can't. Reasons?1. All the characters are very immature. Frankie just looooves talking and thinking about boys, especially Daniel, and would rather keep her reputation than do everything that she can to work out if her best friend was murdered. She’s also really passive agg Thanks to Netgalley and Penguin UK - Michael Joseph for giving me the opportunity to read this.NOW AVAILABLE IN THE UK! (if you really want to bother... though most people seem to love this!)DNF at 31%I can't. I just... I just can't. Reasons?1. All the characters are very immature. Frankie just looooves talking and thinking about boys, especially Daniel, and would rather keep her reputation than do everything that she can to work out if her best friend was murdered. She’s also really passive aggressive, especially when she’s talking to the ‘spirit of Sophie’, eg ”Just because you fancied him Soph, it didn’t mean everyone did”. Daniel gets arsey really easily and holds some serious grudges where he’d rather get into a fight than try to get answers. Leon is aggressive and used phrases like ”If you’ve got something to say, Danny Boy, then say it!” 2. Some of the writing was very repetitive, not just in the sense that lots of the same descriptive words and phrases were used, ”a shadow passes over his face”, but whole sections are repeated, for example, her desire to break up with Mike but not having the guts to do so after her dad's stroke.3. So. Many. Similes. None of them particularly good. ”Questions speed through my mind like galloping racehorses.”“Her nail varnish was a pale blue, like a corpse.”“The wave whipping themselves into a fury like rabid dogs frothing at the mouth.”“Rain slashes against the glass like a maniac with a knife.” 4. Cliche - “I KNOW WHAT YOU’VE DONE” 5. To YA for me.Other people seemed to really like this but it wasn't my cup of tea at all, might be worth checking out if you don't mind a lot of romance in crime novels.
    more
  • Agata
    June 23, 2016
    Oh... my... God... What have I just read?! This book left me speechless, completely numb and emotionally destroyed... It was nothing what I'd expected it to be! I bonded with the leading heroine and I've been completely cought off guard in the end. My jaw dropped while reading the ending. This is what a good thriller should be like! It's shocking, dark, twisted, leaves you wondering, but the truth that is going to be unraveled is nothing what you think it will be! Wow, just... wow! This is a gre Oh... my... God... What have I just read?! This book left me speechless, completely numb and emotionally destroyed... It was nothing what I'd expected it to be! I bonded with the leading heroine and I've been completely cought off guard in the end. My jaw dropped while reading the ending. This is what a good thriller should be like! It's shocking, dark, twisted, leaves you wondering, but the truth that is going to be unraveled is nothing what you think it will be! Wow, just... wow! This is a great material for an amazing movie!
    more
  • Susan
    June 21, 2016
    I received this as an arc from net galley in exchange for an honest review. Twenty - years - ago 2 1 - year-old Sophie Collier vanishes one night. She leaves nothing behind but a trainer on the old pier - and a hole in the heart of her best friend Francesca. Absolutely fantastic read. Devoured in 2 days. Gripping and thrilling read. It wasn't who I thought it was. There was nothing that I disliked about this book. Definitely highly recommend this 5 * from me.
    more
  • Joan
    July 25, 2016
    ‘Local Girl Missing' by Claire Douglas is the story of the childhood friendship between two young girls. When Sophie Collier and her family flee from her violent father and relocate to a small seaside town of Oldcliffe-on-Sea in Somerset, it is a new start for her family: her mother and brother Daniel. The class teacher at her new junior school asks the class for a volunteer to befriend Sophie and quick as lightning Francesca raises her hand in the air. From that moment on they are best friends, ‘Local Girl Missing' by Claire Douglas is the story of the childhood friendship between two young girls. When Sophie Collier and her family flee from her violent father and relocate to a small seaside town of Oldcliffe-on-Sea in Somerset, it is a new start for her family: her mother and brother Daniel. The class teacher at her new junior school asks the class for a volunteer to befriend Sophie and quick as lightning Francesca raises her hand in the air. From that moment on they are best friends, sharing secrets and always there for each other. Francesca’s family welcome Sophie into their home and she becomes like a family member. They are the proprietors of a local hotel and Sophie loves the stability of their family, who dote on their only child. Life should be idyllic for these two girls, but one night the two teenagers witness the drowning of the hotel’s young chef Jason, out with the girls and some spirits stolen from the hotel. They are all totally wasted when Jason plunged into the sea and tragically lost his life. This event cast a shadow over their lives and indirectly influences almost everything that was to follow. In panic the girls race back to the hotel and that night a pact is made to keep secret the circumstances of Jason’s death. This was the first of a series of very bad decisions they made. Then a few years later Sophie herself vanishes after leaving a nightclub. Her death is ruled as an accident as no witnesses saw what happened. All that marked her death was a training shoe wedged in between the safety railings of the crumbling pier. It was such a tragic end as she was in love with her soul mate Leon and was due to start the job she wanted so badly at the start of her career. Her whole future was mapped out at last.Eighteen years later Francesca has reinvented herself. She now calls herself Frankie and she is living and working in the hotel industry in the city of London – a high flier with a new boyfriend in tow. Then she receives a telephone call from Daniel, Sophie’s brother. He wants her to return to her childhood town to help him try to work out exactly what had happened that awful night. The local newspaper has reported that a partial body had been washed up nearby and he wants Frankie to go with him to see if it could be Sophie’s. Frankie cannot refuse his request and so, haunted by the events of her childhood, she travels to Somerset, starting off a chain of events that ricochet on and on until eventually they lead to the discovery Daniel so needs to bring closure to the mystery of what had happened to his beloved sister. He is convinced that it was murder, not an accident or suicide and is determined to unlock the secrets of the past. Together they begin to collect evidence and interview those friends that were there at the time.The story of what follows is chilling, tense and really quite implausible, but that didn’t matter in the least. Told in the voices of Frankie and in flashbacks to that time, and also by Sophie herself in a sort of diary style and in alternating chapters, the events that unravel are the complicated story of jealousy, insecurity, abuse, lies and betrayals and much, much more. There are some really dodgy and creepy characters intent on muddying the waters of their investigation and some who do not want the truth to be revealed. This adds to the tension and I found myself eagerly turning the pages, desperate for the big twist that I felt sure was on the horizon. The story is full of dark alleys, twists and turns and really thrilling action. I was shocked by the finale and not at all disappointed. I really enjoyed reading this convoluted and dark story, which had all the ingredients of a wicked psychological thriller. Somebody was definitely playing intriguing mind games, but who? Why?I would like to thank NetGalley and publishers Orion for my copy of ‘Local Girl Missing', sent out in return for an honest review. It’s an 8.5/10 from me, a very good, highly recommended read within this genre.
    more
  • Cathryn
    July 5, 2016
    This book chilled me to the core. Having read The Sisters by Claire Douglas last year, I didn't know whether or not she would be able to top it with Local Girl Missing. Whilst she may not have topped it, Local Girl Missing definitely gave The Sisters a run for its money. The premise is this: 18 years ago a 21 year old girl named Sophie Collier mysteriously vanishes, causing speculation and outcry in the small seaside town in which she grew up. After 18 years, a body washes up on the beach. Sophi This book chilled me to the core. Having read The Sisters by Claire Douglas last year, I didn't know whether or not she would be able to top it with Local Girl Missing. Whilst she may not have topped it, Local Girl Missing definitely gave The Sisters a run for its money. The premise is this: 18 years ago a 21 year old girl named Sophie Collier mysteriously vanishes, causing speculation and outcry in the small seaside town in which she grew up. After 18 years, a body washes up on the beach. Sophie's childhood best friend, Frankie, is suddenly drawn back to the town that she tried so hard to escape from and together with Sophie's brother, Daniel, they try to discover what really happened that night that Sophie went missing.I really liked Local Girl Missing. It was one of those thrillers with just enough twists and turns to keep you engaged and had a surprising and shocking ending (just like all of the best thrillers do!). I certainly did not see the ending coming! The narrative alternates between Frankie in the present day and Sophie in the run up to the night that she disappeared. I personally really liked this approach as two narratives meant that as a reader, I received a huge amount of detail and was able to understand and appreciate the characters of Frankie and Sophie. The spoilt and fiery Frankie and the naive and brainy Sophie really were brilliantly written characters. I fell in love with both of them throughout the story and loved reading about their friendship over the years. As well as the two leading ladies, pretty much all of the other characters in Local Girl Missing were very well written and unlike many other books, I felt like the secondary characters in this book were not just used as props for the main characters. They were genuinely interesting people and for me, that was one of the main strengths of Local Girl Missing.Overall, this book was a really good read that lived up to my high expectations. Having loved both The Sisters and Local Girl Missing, I can now safely say that any future books that are published by Claire Douglas will be automatically added to my "to-read" list! A solid 4 stars *****I received a free copy of this book from Penguin UK-Michael Joseph, via Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review- Thank you!*
    more
  • Emma Mitchell
    July 11, 2016
    Written across 2 time zones, Local Girl Missing tells the story of Sophie Collier, who went missing, presumed dead, 18 years ago. Cut to the present and her best friend Frankie receives a call from Daniel, Sophie's older brother, informing her that the police believe they have recovered Sophie's "body" and he needs her to return to the sleepy town in which they grew up to help him discover the truth. He never believed the verdict of 'death by misadventure' and he wants Frankie to help him uncove Written across 2 time zones, Local Girl Missing tells the story of Sophie Collier, who went missing, presumed dead, 18 years ago. Cut to the present and her best friend Frankie receives a call from Daniel, Sophie's older brother, informing her that the police believe they have recovered Sophie's "body" and he needs her to return to the sleepy town in which they grew up to help him discover the truth. He never believed the verdict of 'death by misadventure' and he wants Frankie to help him uncover the truth - who killed Sophie? My thoughts....Frankie is back in the little seaside town she left when her best friend disappeared, and her dialogue is written as though she is speaking to Sophie in the present day. The chapters then switch to Sophie's diary from all those years ago, which are formatted in italics which I found brilliant, it makes it much easier to remember whose part you are reading and keep a track of what is going on. I really enjoyed the way this book is written, and although I found some of Frankie's dialogue repetitive, it did help to build up an idea of her frame of mind, she's struggling being back in the little town having spent the last 18 years in London as a career woman as opposed to the dead girls friend. I found that this story seemed to take a while to really kick in and pick up momentum, but when it does, my gosh does it pick up! There are lots of twists, lots of plots building up to really give you the run around and, although there was a point at which I thought some of it was a little pointless, BAM! It all falls into place perfectly (I even gave a gasp of shock whilst sat on the bus!) Some books are quite predictable and you can gauge an idea of who dunnit, or where the story is going, I thought I had and I was shocked by the plot twists and turns at the end! Douglas brings everything together brilliantly and you will be left gasping for breath by the end! I really enjoyed Local Girl Missing and would certainly recommend it to others, thank you to Net Galley and Penguin for providing me with a copy in exchange for my honest review. I will be keeping an eye out for Douglas' work in the future!
    more
  • Clare
    July 18, 2016
    I would like to thank Netgalley and Penguin for this ARC in exchange for an open and honest review.'Twenty years ago. 21 year old Sophie Collier vanishes one night. She leaves nothing behind but a trainer on the pier - and a hole in the heart of her best friend Francesca.Francesca Howe (Frankie) is now a successful businesswoman who manages her parents chain of hotel. One day she receives a phone call from Daniel Collier, Sophie's brother. The remains of a body had been found washed up further u I would like to thank Netgalley and Penguin for this ARC in exchange for an open and honest review.'Twenty years ago. 21 year old Sophie Collier vanishes one night. She leaves nothing behind but a trainer on the pier - and a hole in the heart of her best friend Francesca.Francesca Howe (Frankie) is now a successful businesswoman who manages her parents chain of hotel. One day she receives a phone call from Daniel Collier, Sophie's brother. The remains of a body had been found washed up further up the coast in Bream. The police were almost certain the remains were Sophie. Daniel never believed that Sophie killed herself and asks Frankie to return to their home town of Oldcliffe On Sea. Frankie and Sophie shared a terrible secret. When Frankie returns to Oldcliffe strange things happen. She receives a series of anonymous letters and hears the sound of a baby crying in the empty flat next door.The book is split between Frankie's POV and excerpts from Sophie's diary leading to her disappearance. I live in a seaside town and I recognise how bleak a town can be during the winter months. OMG! I loved this book, it had plenty of red herrings, I was absolutely sure who did it but I was wrong. This is Claire Douglas second book, I look forward to reading The Sisters.
    more
  • Nicki Southwell
    July 8, 2016
    What an exciting book. Claire Douglas keeps secrets close to her chest and whilst thinking you have worked out what happens, you are in for a big shock.A few years ago Frankie and Sophie are best friends. They live in a quaint Victorian seaside town in Somerset and while away their spare time together. They share everything, especially secrets.A few years later they meet there again, having both been to university, but had lost touch. They try to pick up where they left off, revisiting their old What an exciting book. Claire Douglas keeps secrets close to her chest and whilst thinking you have worked out what happens, you are in for a big shock.A few years ago Frankie and Sophie are best friends. They live in a quaint Victorian seaside town in Somerset and while away their spare time together. They share everything, especially secrets.A few years later they meet there again, having both been to university, but had lost touch. They try to pick up where they left off, revisiting their old haunts and picking up with mutual friends. Sophie has a brother and mother at home, Frankie just both parents.Quite quickly we are aware that the girls have a big secret from when they were teenagers at school. A mutual friend had an accident and fell off their pier and drowned. They both maintained that it was an accident. The ever popular Frankie finds that picking up where they left off is difficult, Sophie falls in love and Frankie feels left out.Then Sophie goes missing..... presumed dead. Her favourite trainer is found on the pier and she has never seen again. Her brother, Daniel, contacts Frankie in London to say that a body has been found (18 years later) washed up in the area and they think it is Sophie. Can she come down to lend support and try to find out what happened? She doesn't hesitate to leave her hotel business and go. From there secrets come out, fears are realised, and friends and acquaintances are questioned again.You are in for a big shock, but I won't spoil it for you. A must have book on your TBR pile.
    more
  • Between The Pages Book Club (Gemma M)
    August 29, 2016
    Right I have to start off by saying this has to be one of the best books I have read so far this year. Amazing. I managed to devour this book in TWO sittings, TWO! The ending will have your jaw dropping, it did with me. Brilliant twist. Brilliantly written! Absolutely loved it. I would highly suggest you all go read this book NOW if you haven't already. I have a new favourite author Claire Douglas. Thanks to Netgalley I got the chance to read this story and review it. I read Claire's previous bo Right I have to start off by saying this has to be one of the best books I have read so far this year. Amazing. I managed to devour this book in TWO sittings, TWO! The ending will have your jaw dropping, it did with me. Brilliant twist. Brilliantly written! Absolutely loved it. I would highly suggest you all go read this book NOW if you haven't already. I have a new favourite author Claire Douglas. Thanks to Netgalley I got the chance to read this story and review it. I read Claire's previous book The Sisters and loved that just as much as this book. Brilliant writer who knows how to shock the readers with dramatic twists and turns and keep them hooked throughout. I know I probably sound crazy right now but honestly I LOVED THIS BOOK. One I will not forget for a while.. It was one of those books that I was so engrossed in that any tiny noise in my house made me jump, love books like that. I cannot wait for her next book already, hurry up! I don't need to say this but I found it easy to read and loved how the chapters focused on the two main characters Frankie and Sophie clearly enough to not be confusing. Excellent. A five star read for me. Local Girl Missing is the PERFECT story for readers who enjoy an outstanding suspense, mystery, thriller and drama filled story with plenty of lies, secrets, twists and turns. Enjoy, I did.
    more
  • Babus Ahmed
    October 10, 2016
    Sophie disappeared eighteen years ago, but when Francesca gets a call from her brother she learns that remains, possibly her best friends, have washed up. She agrees to go back to her hometown to support Daniel in identifying Sophie's remains. However, she sees and experiences strange events, making the mystery of what happened eighteen years ago even murkier.This really is a stunning, taut psychological thriller that I found consumed me into the small hours of the morning. The characters realis Sophie disappeared eighteen years ago, but when Francesca gets a call from her brother she learns that remains, possibly her best friends, have washed up. She agrees to go back to her hometown to support Daniel in identifying Sophie's remains. However, she sees and experiences strange events, making the mystery of what happened eighteen years ago even murkier.This really is a stunning, taut psychological thriller that I found consumed me into the small hours of the morning. The characters realistically convincing and the story told from Francesca's point of view in the present and from Sophie's point of view eighteen years ago.The suspense of this thriller is well written and the conclusion eerily haunting. A definite must read and favourite thriller of 2016.
    more
  • Renita D'Silva
    November 7, 2016
    Thrilling and intense with many twists and turns. An absolute page turner.
  • Karmozijntje
    April 19, 2016
    Eerie, haunting, compelling. And with two great lead characters. For fans of EENIE MEENIE, THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN and BLACK-EYED SUSANS.
  • Madeline Gannon
    July 5, 2016
    First off, thank you to Michael Joseph at Penguin UK for providing me an ARC through NetGalley. This book is a whirl wind. I picked it up last night, and pretty much only put it down to eat and sleep. (Well, until my iPad battery died at 80% and I had to wait a grueling 2 hours to read the ending.) This is the first ARC I've received off of NetGalley, and I'm so excited that it was such a great read.The book begins with a 38-year-old Frankie getting a call from Daniel, the brother of her best fr First off, thank you to Michael Joseph at Penguin UK for providing me an ARC through NetGalley. This book is a whirl wind. I picked it up last night, and pretty much only put it down to eat and sleep. (Well, until my iPad battery died at 80% and I had to wait a grueling 2 hours to read the ending.) This is the first ARC I've received off of NetGalley, and I'm so excited that it was such a great read.The book begins with a 38-year-old Frankie getting a call from Daniel, the brother of her best friend Sophie who went missing in 1997. Daniel states that a body has been found that the police think is Sophie, and Frankie should come back to their hometown to help get everything resolved. The story is told from two points of view: Frankie's in present day, and Sophie's in 1997. Frankie's parts are written almost as stream-of-consciousness, where Frankie is experiencing and dictating what is happening as if she is talking directly to Sophie. I liked this method of storytelling as it felt like I was getting a deep look into Frankie's mind and, due to much reminiscing on Frankie's part, it allowed me to get to know both Frankie and Sophie simultaneously. Sophie's bits are written in diary format and give an intense look into the events leading up to her mysterious disappearance.Overall, I really enjoyed a lot of things about this book. It's not a Gone Girl or a The Girl on the Train - in that the intensity isn't quite to panic level - but it is a very compelling mystery. The characters are well developed and believable and the mystery builds well, releasing tidbits of info along the way, while holding the reader in suspense for the "big reveal." The only complaint I have is for the setting - I wish more time had been spent building the atmosphere of Oldcliffe. Though the pier, the site of a lot of action in the book, is very well described, I didn't get a thorough enough view of this little town. (Granted, I am an American and not as familiar with small English sea towns as a reader from the UK might be.) Overwhelmingly, my favorite part of the book was the ending. I am the type of reader who pays close attention to little details, trying to puzzle out the mystery before the revelation; however, I missed the mark on this one. While parts of the "who dunnit" resolution crossed my mind while reading, I was never able to predict exactly what was going on and was left in wide-eyed shock when the truth was revealed. (I won't go into detail now, as the book isn't out yet and I don't want to spoil anything.) Overall, this book is very psychological in nature, examining the capacity for the human mind to justify actions, manipulate others, and even create alternate realities for itself. It's a very insightful, if somewhat terrifying, read. Solidly, a 4 star read.
    more
  • Vickie White
    July 6, 2016
    INNOVATIVE. ORIGINAL. INGENIOUS. BRILLIANCE.Holy hell what a book!5+ stars read!Without doubt one of the best books I’ve read this year! A deliciously deceptive, dark, all consuming page turner of a read that I could literally not put down from the very first word to the last. Complete book binge. Loved it! Eighteen years ago Sophie Collier disappeared, leaving nothing behind but a trainer on the old Victorian Pier. Once a thing of beauty now it harbours secrets and lies. Haunted for the past tw INNOVATIVE. ORIGINAL. INGENIOUS. BRILLIANCE.Holy hell what a book!5+ stars read!Without doubt one of the best books I’ve read this year! A deliciously deceptive, dark, all consuming page turner of a read that I could literally not put down from the very first word to the last. Complete book binge. Loved it! Eighteen years ago Sophie Collier disappeared, leaving nothing behind but a trainer on the old Victorian Pier. Once a thing of beauty now it harbours secrets and lies. Haunted for the past twenty years by the disappearance of her best friend, Francesca has tried to move on with her life. But when she receives a call from Sophie’s brother telling her that a body has been found, she knows she can no longer hide from her past.With her own secrets to keep she reluctantly considers the idea of returning to Oldcliffe especially with the threat of digging up things that are better left in the past. But faced with no other choice she must return to where she grew up, alas it might finally be time to put things to bed and move on with her life or will the truth finally be uncovered and questions answered?What happened to Sophie? Why was she at the pier? Who or what enticed her there?When Frankie and Daniel, Sophie’s older brother start trying to piece things together it becomes apparent that someone is not pleased by this and wants to stop them and scare Frankie enough so that she’ll leave Oldcliffe and not return. Tasked with trying to uncover the truth they are met with more hurdles as it even seems like the locals know more than what they are prepared to share with them. Will the truth ever be uncovered? Will they ever find out what happened to Sophie? Could it be suicide? Could she have fell so nothing more than an unfortunate accident? Or could it be murder?I was transfixed with this story. The writing style and plot created by Ms Douglas is original, imaginative providing vivid descriptions giving me an impressive visual. I wasn’t just reading the book I was there. The intense descriptive scenes from the apartment looking out onto the pier gave me the chills! Told through dual narrative each chapter alternating between Sophie’s pov set in the past and Frankie’s set in the present. This gave me a real insight into the characters heads allowing me to really feel connected to them.The plot twists in this book will keep you guessing until the very end. Just when I thought I had things figured out the direction of the story gave me not just one suspect but a whole plethora of suspects. I couldn’t second guess what I thought would happen as each twist and turn took me by complete surprise. The ending was pure brilliance!Can’t wait to read more from Claire Douglas and now I have some serious author stalking I mean following to do!As I’ve said I loved every second I spent reading this story and I highly recommend it. **Arc received with thanks from Penguin UK courtesy of Netgalley**
    more
  • Rhiann
    July 6, 2016
    Well, this book did not take me long to read at all...in fact most of this rainy Sunday has seen me lounging on my favourite chair, legs curled beneath me, and me completely engrossed and lost in this stunning and gripping novel.I loved how the book was split between two time-frames - one in the present day which introduces us to Francesca, a successful business owner who is shocked and shaken after receiving a phone call saying that a body has washed up in Oldcliffe-on-Sea, the town which she g Well, this book did not take me long to read at all...in fact most of this rainy Sunday has seen me lounging on my favourite chair, legs curled beneath me, and me completely engrossed and lost in this stunning and gripping novel.I loved how the book was split between two time-frames - one in the present day which introduces us to Francesca, a successful business owner who is shocked and shaken after receiving a phone call saying that a body has washed up in Oldcliffe-on-Sea, the town which she grew up in and is thought to be that of her childhood friend Sophie who went missing eighteen years ago, and she reluctantly returns to her childhood haunt to be with the brother of Sophie whilst they await the formal identification of the body. The book then takes us back to eighteen years ago, and to the narration of Sophie herself in which she returns to Oldcliffe after finishing university and is back working and socialising with Frankie, her best friend. In the present we are given clues that Frankie and Sophie shared a dark secret which someone else knows and is ready to taunt the book's protagonist with when she returns. Slowly the stories from both time-frames start to unravel and we eagerly learn to know the final fate of Sophie and whether her killer will be brought to justice after eighteen years. The book was exceptionally written, and with the clear descriptions of the town itself, not only of the physical descriptives but that of the sound and smells, the book almost transports us there! But I loved how there were many suspects that could have hurt Sophie, as well as the clear psychological problems of Frankie in the present day, we are readers are trying to decipher what happened for ourselves. It is clear that all characters were holding secrets from the past as well as the present which only adds to the foreboding of the events from eighteen years ago as well as not being able to fully like any of the characters as it were unclear who could and could not be trusted - not that's a bad thing with this type of psychological thriller. The plot, which would make the most gripping television drama, was a real page turner and found it extremely hard to put down for any length of time. This comes so highly recommended and has definitely became one of my standout books for this year. Thank you GoodReads for this opportunity to read and experience this brilliant psychological drama!
    more
  • Laura
    July 11, 2016
    I enjoyed this good thriller by Claire Douglas and I read lots of them but not all are satisfying, this is not the best but definitely among the good ones. As in many psychological thrillers the main character is female, in this case we should say that the main characters are two: Frankie (Francesca) and Soph (Sophie) who lived in a seaside town in Somerset, England. They had been friend for years when aged 21 Soph died, possibly drowned. While initially it was a missing person investigation whe I enjoyed this good thriller by Claire Douglas and I read lots of them but not all are satisfying, this is not the best but definitely among the good ones. As in many psychological thrillers the main character is female, in this case we should say that the main characters are two: Frankie (Francesca) and Soph (Sophie) who lived in a seaside town in Somerset, England. They had been friend for years when aged 21 Soph died, possibly drowned. While initially it was a missing person investigation when one of her shoes was found on an old and decrepit pier, the police declared it a death by misadventure and closed the case. Nineteen years later Soph's brother, Daniel calls Frankie who now lives in London asking her to come and help after a foot, who he believed belonged to his sister, was found on a beach. Frankie goes to help and there she finds a very oppressive atmosphere, many strange things happen (a ghost?) and so much it is unexplained. At the same time we get to know about Soph by reading as alternative chapters parts of her diary written in the weeks before her death. As it should happen in all good thrillers the tension builds up and I stayed awake until past my usual bedtime to finish the book, which is a good sign. The twist at the end might appear a bit far fetched and will not please everyone but it is a good twist even if I have guessed some of it, but not everything and I was not sure until the end. Bits of information are revealed throughout the book but that is not enough to actually know what really happened until the last few pages. There is a bit of tension but not as much as in other thrillers but the psychological aspect of the book is very important. I also thought that the typical English seaside resort in winter was described very well, I nearly felt the wind when reading this book!I received an advanced review copy thanks to Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
    more
Write a review