Then She Was Gone: A Novel (Paperback)
This bone-chilling mystery follows a mother in her chase to close the case on her 16-year-old who has been missing for ten years. For a story where it seems like you start reading with all of the answers, there are a fantastic amount of twists and turns in this novel. The book began with questions and answers, and led to closure, relief, and at the same time, horror, of what was.
Recommended by Anne— From November Staff Favorites: Early Holiday Picks & More!
A 2018 Goodreads Choice Award Finalist—Top 5 Best Mystery & Thriller * A Suspense Magazine “Best of 2018” Thriller/Suspense Pick
“An acutely observed family drama with bone-chilling suspense.” —People
“Jewell teases out her twisty plot at just the right pace, leaving readers on the edge of their seats. Her multilayered characters are sheer perfection, and even the most astute thriller reader won’t see where everything is going until the final threads are unknotted.” —Booklist, starred review
“Sharply written with twists and turns, Jewell’s latest will please fans of Gone Girl, The Girl on the Train, or Luckiest Girl Alive." —Library Journal
Ellie Mack was the perfect daughter. She was fifteen, the youngest of three. She was beloved by her parents, friends, and teachers. She and her boyfriend made a teenaged golden couple. She was days away from an idyllic post-exams summer vacation, with her whole life ahead of her.
And then she was gone.
Now, her mother Laurel Mack is trying to put her life back together. It’s been ten years since her daughter disappeared, seven years since her marriage ended, and only months since the last clue in Ellie’s case was unearthed. So when she meets an unexpectedly charming man in a café, no one is more surprised than Laurel at how quickly their flirtation develops into something deeper. Before she knows it, she’s meeting Floyd’s daughters—and his youngest, Poppy, takes Laurel’s breath away.
Because looking at Poppy is like looking at Ellie. And now, the unanswered questions she’s tried so hard to put to rest begin to haunt Laurel anew. Where did Ellie go? Did she really run away from home, as the police have long suspected, or was there a more sinister reason for her disappearance? Who is Floyd, really? And why does his daughter remind Laurel so viscerally of her own missing girl?
About the Author
Lisa Jewell is the internationally bestselling author of eighteen novels, including the New York Times bestseller Then She Was Gone, as well as I Found You, The Girls in the Garden, and The House We Grew Up In. In total, her novels have sold more than two million copies across the English-speaking world and her work has also been translated into sixteen languages so far. Lisa lives in London with her husband and their two daughters. Connect with her on Twitter @LisaJewellUK and on Facebook @LisaJewellOfficial.
Praise for Then She Was Gone:
“Then She Was Gone is a riveting thriller.”
“Jewell teases out her twisty plot at just the right pace, leaving readers on the edge of their seats. There will surely be comparisons to novels such as Emma Donoghue’s Room (2010) as well as all of the “Girl” thrillers, but Jewell’s latest really isn’t at all derivative. Her multilayered characters are sheer perfection, and even the most astute thriller reader won’t see where everything is going until the final threads are unknotted. Those few who do guess early won’t mind, as the pace and prose will keep them hooked.”
“Jewell gets more riveting and twisty with every book she writes. Completely absorbing, fast-paced, well-written and with a shocking ending that will keep readers guessing, Then She Was Gone is a nearly pitch-perfect thriller. Fans of Gillian Flynn, Paula Hawkins and Ruth Ware are sure to adore this haunting novel.”
“More than a whiff of The Lovely Bones wafts through this haunting domestic noir from bestseller Jewell…Skillfully told by several narrators, Jewell’s gripping novel is an emotionally resonant story of loss, grief, and renewal.”
"For thriller readers, Jewell's latest will not disappoint. Sharply written with twists and turns, it will please fans of Gone Girl, The Girl on the Train, or Luckiest Girl Alive."
“In addition to being a complex and genuinely suspenseful narrative, Then She Was Gone is a rich study of the ways in which people respond to grief and how past trauma can continue to shape their decision-making and relationships years or decades later. Readers will be truly affected by Ellie’s real story once it’s revealed—and they’ll be satisfied by the hopeful yet bittersweet ending. Jewell demonstrates once again that she has what it takes to genuinely shock, surprise and move her readers.”
"What begins as a story about the mother of a missing girl starting a new relationship as she comes terms with her grief morphs into a gripping, disturbing and utterly fascinating tale about what really happened to young Ellie Mack. I've been a Lisa Jewell fan for a long time and in this book, as in all her others, she deftly weaves a compelling plot with an emotional depth that leaves you gasping. In Then She Was Gone she has created a book that is dark and claustrophobic but also heartfelt and moving. Then She Was Gone packs a huge emotional punch that will leave you winded. I loved it."
— C.L. Taylor, bestselling author
"If you were the first of your friends to read Girl On The Train, and have read Gone Girl more times than you can remember, then here is your summer read. A thriller about a 15-year-old girl who has vanished and a mother who won’t give up hope. A perfect Pimm’s companion."
"Smart and engrossing."
"A dark, compulsive psychological thriller, yet one which is also uplifting and tender. I absolutely loved Then She Was Gone."
"Jewell has departed from chick lit and gone full tilt into a psycho thriller, but she’s lost none of her brilliance… Deeply emotional and incredibly clever. Bravo."
Praise for I Found You:
“Lisa Jewell is a brilliant storyteller, creating suspenseful yet believable novels time and again. I Found You is no exception—filled with intriguing characters connected in startling ways. Quickly paced yet delicately nuanced, this novel is sure to appeal to fans of Big Little Lies and The Woman in Cabin 10.”
"Jewell is a wonderful storyteller. Her characters are believable, her writing is strong and poetic, and her narrative is infused with just enough intrigue to keep the pages turning. Readers of Liane Moriarty, Paula Hawkins, and Ruth Ware will love."
“How [the] plots intersect and finally collide is one of the great thrills of reading Jewell’s book. She ratchets up the tension masterfully, and her writing is lively.”
"Jewell keeps the reader guessing."
“The structure keeps the suspense level high, and Jewell manages surprising revelations all the way up to the ending. The mix of women’s fiction and suspense—plus a no-nonsense 40-something heroine at the heart of the story—makes this a good fit for fans of Liane Moriarty.”
“Riveting…numerous twists avoid predictability, and the novel is well-paced as it weaves three narratives together. Dark and moody, this is a mystery with substance.”
"One word: wow! This latest offering from Jewell starts off strong and keeps readers riveted until the very last word…this book is ‘unreliable narrator’ at its best!"
“Jewell is a genuinely original and skilled novelist with an impressive flair for deftly crafted narratives and surprising plot development.”