This is my first read of this author but it definitely will not be the last. What a brilliant story.
‘The Girl Next Door’ is cleverly plotted around Clare Edwards, who is the teenager living next door to the ‘picture perfect’ Goodwin family. Clare goes missing and is found murdered with her head smashed in. The whole community is stunned as this is a small, close village where any crime is pretty much unheard of.
The story is told from three viewpoints; Jane Goodwin who we know has a dark secret from the past, DS Madeleine Shaw who has lived in the area all her life and understands the local people better than most and Clare, herself, during the day leading up to her murder.
In a close knit community rumours, innuendos and gossip fuel the fire of accusations and several people come under suspicion as we learn of secrets, lies and non-communication within families and neighbours.
It is not until the ending that I felt I had the full story and the author cleverly lead me along variously misleading/covered paths.
Brilliant read, highly recommended.