Killing Spree – Stephanie Rothwell reviews The Lost by Claire McGowan

Today’s Killing Spree post is from Stephanie Rothwell. Stephanie blogs at Stephsbookblog. Here she talks about her love of crime series and reviews The Lost by Claire McGowan. My thanks to Stephanie for this fab post.

I have always loved books that form part of a series, especially crime fiction. When I was a child it was always Enid Blyton, the Nancy Drew books and The Hardy Boys. As I got older I progressed to Agatha Christie and Raymond Chandler. I enjoyed all I read but it never occurred to me to read them in any order. It was just what I could lay my hands on. And then I started using the local library. I got totally hooked on books by Val McDermid (the Kate Brannigan series) and Faye Kellerman (Decker). It was the Kellerman books that made me more interested in reading books in series order.
I always try now to read books in the correct order. The only way I can describe this ‘obsession’ is a feeling of anxiety that the tale I had missed could be revealed but more that I have missed out on character development. There are a few that I have read recently that I really do think need to be read in order. These are Steven Dunne, Eva Dolan and Claire McGowan. 
Steven Dunnes’s first two books in his Damon Brock series are so closely linked the second wouldn’t make much of an impression if you hadn’t read the first. 
Eva Dolan has published two books so far out of her series that feature Zigic and Ferreira. The third is out next year and is one that is am very eager to read. The plots were not linked but the character and team development is one of the best that I have read.
Claire McGowan has three books published that feature Paula McGuire. I have only read one of these so far but my gut feeling is that this series where The Troubles in Northern Ireland feature strongly will affect the character development and the plots significantly. 
Here is my review of The Lost by Claire McGowan

Not everyone who’s missing is lost
When two teenage girls go missing along the Irish border, forensic psychologist Paula Maguire has to return to the hometown she left years before. Swirling with rumour and secrets, the town is gripped by fear of a serial killer. But the truth could be even darker.

Not everyone who’s lost wants to be found
Surrounded by people and places she tried to forget, Paula digs into the cases as the truth twists further away. What’s the link with two other disappearances from 1985? And why does everything lead back to the town’s dark past- including the reasons her own mother went missing years before?

Nothing is what it seems
As the shocking truth is revealed, Paula learns that sometimes, it’s better not to find what you’ve lost.

The Lost had been sat in the kindle pile for a while and after seeing a flurry of tweets about the new book in the series I decided to see what I was missing.
I found it to be a fantastic novel. The first in a new series Paula Maguire has been employed by the police force in her home town. She is working with a team who are assigned to cold cases but who are also investigating a current case, the disappearances of two missing teenage girls. She doesn’t really want to be back there. Looking after her father, seeing old friends she hasn’t been in touch with for years and unanswered questions about her Mother’s disappearance years earlier. 
The team were brilliant. Consisting of both Catholic and Protestant, Northern and Southern Irish, the way they interacted with each other was a joy to read. I could hear the dialect as I read, something that I have felt in other novels seemed false. 
The investigation has its problems and initially Paula isn’t accepted by the others but she is determined to solve the case with or without their help. 
It was a great book to read, I know that there are at least another two I can read and I’m looking forward to doing so. I see great potential for the team of detectives in Ballyterrin.

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