Four little words can ruin a life.
When Jess meets five-year-old Daisy and her mum, Morag, in a local London park, they seem a perfectly happy and loving pair. Until Daisy whispers four little words that send ice seeping down Jess’s spine…
She’s not my mum.
Determined to save Daisy, Jess becomes obsessed with unearthing Morag’s secrets. As she digs ever deeper, her friends and family start to question her own increasingly paranoid behaviour…
Four little words can end a life.
But Jess knows what she heard and she’s certain the fear in Daisy’s eyes was real. Of course she isn’t imagining things… Or is she?
Mummy’s Little Secret is a nerve-shredding new psychological thriller from the author of The Missing Children Case Files – perfect for fans of Karin Slaughter and C.L. Taylor.
Mummy’s Little Secret is a story that raises a lot of questions as you race through the pages. From page one, you’ll wonder why Daisy would whisper those words She’s not my mum to a strange lady in the park (Jess). You’ll wonder why Jess then takes it all so seriously, especially after the little girl’s mother, Morag, approaches too and tries to be friendly, going so far as to suggest Jess’s daughter Grace might enjoy a play-date with Daisy before school starts for both of them.
Then the story switches from Jess’s viewpoint to Morag’s, and you’ll wonder why Morag is so sensitive about Jess’s reaction to them in the park. And if you’re not convinced by then, the remaining chapters told in alternating viewpoints will have you hooked as they lay the foundations in a before – now – after set of scenarios.
In the before chapters, you’ll see Jess and Morag wallow in uncertainty and paranoia, constantly questioning the other woman’s actions, words and motives. Each woman carries a plethora of issues that have taken their toll on how they live their lives currently, not to mention their mental state. Jess lost a child and was left wheelchair-bound after an epidural during the birth hit a nerve. She’s struggling to cope with losing her child, her mobility, her job and her very essence. Morag has had to move frequently to keep her family safe, the why comes later, but she is clearly afraid of being found and is wary of everyone, but especially Jess. At times, the paranoia on the part of both women is off the scale, maybe even to the point of being beyond belief, however the explosive twist at the end more than makes up for it.
In the now chapters, you’ll see Detective Mike Ferry investigate a bloody murder. Here both women seem to be involved, one covered in blood at the scene of the crime, the other reporting a crime. So, who’s the victim here? There may be more than one.
In the after chapters, you see the impact of that murder on Jess and Morag’s lives. Will they be able to move forward, or does a life in prison await?
Mummy’s Little Secret is a pacy read, and you won’t want to stop until all those questions are answered. The plot builds to a tense ending, as suspicions escalate and the path to the truth is convoluted.
Thanks to the author, M.A. Hunter, to the publishers at HarperCollins, U.K. & One More Chapter, and to NetGalley for my copy of this thrilling read.