‘His Kidnapper’s Shoes’ by Maggie James

His Kidnapper’s Shoes

Laura Bateman must face up to what she has done, which means facing up to her past. Acknowledging that her relationship with her son is not what it should be, is never going to be easy.

Daniel has always felt he was in the wrong place, with the wrong family, and now grown up, he learns his muddled ideas were not simply a figment of his imagination – his mother is not who he thought she was, and the discovery rips him apart. Searching for facts, he finds out more than he bargained for, but his questions seem destined to generate more questions. Whatever happens, one thing is clear – forgiving Laura is not on the agenda…

These days, kidnap and sexual abuse seem to be hitting the headlines with awful regularity, so it’s no surprise when a novelist pulls apart the subject matter to look at why and how such things happen, as well as exploring the consequences for all concerned. These aren’t easy things to discuss, let alone write about, so for that reason alone, this is a book well worth reading.

The last time I read one of this author’s novels (Blackwater Lake), I really liked it, though I have to say, it wasn’t a patch on this one. I’m happy to admit I didn’t expect His Kidnapper’s Shoes to be this good, but Maggie James knocked me a little bit for six and had me in tears a few times into the bargain. She gets right down inside her characters in a way we don’t often see, particularly when tackling such difficult issues. At times, given the premise of her story, I struggled to see how she was going to bring it all together without leaving everyone in a bit of a mess, but the denouement was realistic as well as satisfying.

A well-written, thought-provoking and cleverly-constructed story.

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