Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Vanished by Theo Baxter - Book Tour & Review

Book Blurb

Maggie knows someone wants to hurt her daughter. So why will no-one help?

Single mother Maggie Conner struggles to raise her young daughter, Isabel, in a household ruled by her own abusive father.

Terrified for Isabel’s safety, Maggie realises that neither her cold, distant mother nor anyone else in town seem willing to help them.

Then Isabel starts to disappear for long periods, returning with no idea of where she has been or why.

And when Maggie tries to get outside help, doctors and psychologists seem strangely reluctant to get involved in Isabel’s case. Is someone threatening them so they’ll stay away?

Desperate to save her daughter, Maggie searches for answers. But the more she digs, the more she is forced to confront the secrets buried deep in her own past.

As Maggie’s whole world begins to unravel, can she find the strength to face the terrifying truth?

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My Review
Vanished is a psychological thriller with a paranormal twist. Based on the blurb and the cover, I wasn't expecting the twist, but as soon as I started reading, it was pretty obvious, at least to me. However, that does not detract from the book in any way, at least for me. I love paranormal stuff, so this was a pleasant surprise. If that's not your thing, though, you may not enjoy this as much as I did. 
The story follows Maggie, a young woman who is dealing with a lot. Like, a lot. She lives at home with her parents and her 8-year old daughter, Isabel. But her life is far from idyllic. Her father is abusive, her mother is barely functioning, and her daughter has mood swings that would make anyone dizzy. But Maggie has learned to deal with her dysfunctional family, for the most part. 
When Isabel starts having medical issues, Maggie is determined to get help from a doctor. But no one seems to want to help. She knows it's because her father owns the town and has paid everyone off so he can have complete control over what goes on in his house. But is that really what's going on? 
The more Maggie tries to reach out, the more she realizes things aren't exactly what they seem. Her entire world is about to come crashing down around her, but will she be strong enough to survive? 
I found this to be a pretty quick read. It was relatively obvious what was really going on almost from the very beginning. But there were a few times where I started to second-guess things, and Maggie's father was a bit of a conundrum for a little while. But when the reveal happened, I was like, "Yep. Called it."
The one thing that did irk me was Maggie. I get why she was in denial. I get why she refused to see what was right in front of her face, if you will. But still, her inability to process things and whatnot started to get super frustrating after a while. That's really the only thing I had an issue with. But I also did understand why she was the way she was. I guess I just wish things had been a bit more subtle and mysterious.
If you're into psychological thrillers with a paranormal twist, give this one a shot. You just might enjoy it.
4 stars!

Author Bio  Theo Baxter loves writing psychological suspense thrillers. It’s all about that last reveal that he loves shocking readers with.

He grew up in New York, where there was crime all around. He decided to turn that into something positive with his fiction.

His stories will have you reading through the night—they are very addictive!

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