No One Home - Tim Weaver
Reading Challenge Category: Free ARC from NetGalley
At Halloween, the residents of Black Gale gather for a dinner party. As the only nine people living there, they've become close friends as well as neighbours. They eat, drink and laugh. They play games and take photographs. But those photographs will be the last record of any of them. Because by the next morning, the whole village has vanished. With no bodies, no evidence and no clues, the mystery of what happened at Black Gale remains unsolved two and a half years on. But then the families of the missing turn to investigator David Raker - and their obsession becomes his. What secrets were the neighbours keeping from their families - and from each other? Were they really everything they seemed to be? And is Raker looking for nine missing people - or nine dead bodies?
I really liked the idea of the premise of this book, so I decided to give an unknown (to me) author a go, and I wasn’t disappointed. This story gripped me right from the beginning; what had happened to the residents of Black Gale? I had expected a slight preview of their lives before they disappeared. I was expecting to be there with them on Halloween but to turn a chapter and them be gone. However, the story starts off with them already missing, and David Raker is starting an investigation two and a half years after their disappearance. I really enjoyed how the investigation unfolded, and nothing was kept from us the readers. We were watching it develop and finding out things as Raker did. I saw the massive twist, but only as Raker figured it out, it really did feel like I was there alongside him as his sidekick! It was really well-written, had lots of hooks to keep you reading just another chapter before going to sleep! The characters were likeable, and you really worried when any peril was about to befall them. The only thing that let this book down for me, but won’t be a problem for many was the fact that it was book ten of the David Raker series. It doesn’t say this on NetGalley, which is a massive bugbear of mine. I did feel like I had missed out on a lot as so much has contributed to his career, his insecurities and relationships with other present characters. All of these events must have happened in previous books, so although the story of Black Gale is stand-alone, that of David Raker is not. No matter how much the premise gripped me I wouldn’t have requested it had I known it was book ten! This was, however, a minor inconvenience and I did still, luckily, enjoy this book. So much so that I am going to have to go back and read the previous nine books.