The Vanishing Point by Val McDermid
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This was my first book by Val McDermid and it probably won't be my last. I was looking for something tense and thrilling and this certainly fit the bill, loads of twists and turns.
Beginning with the abduction of a child in an airport in America, we are then introduced to the childs guardian Stephanie, a ghost writer who makes a living interviewing and then writing biographies of celebrities.
Recently she had been involved with writing the life story of a reality tv star, and this is the bit I found rather hard to stomach - The author has clearly based her second lead character very closely on the late celebrity Jade Goody and for me that made it a lazy way of writing a story - the parallels kept on coming and I just kept feeling as though I'd read the book before as there were too many similarities to her life.
However the story was so well written I was prepared to overlook this and am glad I did as the story develops in ways reality never could and builds to a truly shocking climax.
As the search for the missing child continues we are given hints of who may be behind it, fed a few rather tasty red herrings and led gently up the garden path without realizing where we are heading - and even on those occasions where we second guess whats coming its never quite how we anticipated.
In my opinion the authors writing style seemed a touch dated, for such a contemporary theme I felt it was written by someone who had researched everything really well but wasn't completely in touch with today's celebrity culture. However her great storytelling ability more than made up for this and her ability to weave a web of events whilst keeping me completely absorbed despite those few minor misgivings makes me want to go out and discover what else she has to offer.
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