The Lost and the Found is a teen fiction thriller novel by Cat Clarke that can leave the reader eager to turn the next page or put down the book and give up.
When six-year-old Laurel Logan was abducted, the only witness was her younger sister. Faith’s childhood was automatically taken over by Laurel’s disappearance, whether that was the press hounding them every day, or her parent’s difficult marriage, Faith just didn’t seem to have her own life.
Thirteen years later, a young woman is found in the garden of the Logans’ old house, disorientated and clutching the teddy bear Laurel was last seen with. Laurel is home at last, safe and sound. Faith always dreamed of getting her sister back and now that dream has become reality. However, a disturbing trail of events leaves Faith increasingly paranoid, and before long she begins to wonder if if she really is happy that she’s got her sister back.
First of all, this book is not a thriller. It’s been put in the thriller genre pigeon-hole many many times and all I can say is: this book did not get me on the edge of seat and it didn’t make me wonder… Which is what thriller’s are supposed to do.
I am a massive fan of Cat Clarke’s other books and I really do like her style of writing. I’m glad that she managed to focus the book on the relationship between Faith and Laurel and not the romance between Faith and her boyfriend, Thomas. In that way, it’s not like other teen fiction books where the whole storyline is based on romance. There are romantic aspects of this book, but they are hidden away in the background and every so often, we are introduced to this aspect but not too much. Which I absolutely loved. Going into this book, I was hoping that the main character – Faith – wouldn’t be held back by her boyfriend and she wasn’t. This made me incredibly happy.
The characters of Faith and Laurel were also spectacular. If you have an older/younger sister, you will be able to relate to the character of Faith easily. You love having your sister there and you know that you love her, but sometimes she can be the most annoying person on the planet and you just need to get away. Faith made this problem very real. You could tell that she was over the moon when Laurel cam back, but over the course of the book, she started getting those ‘sisterly’ feelings where Faith was getting irritated by certain things that Laurel would do. Is this type of realism that comes from Clarke’s writing style that I just adore.
I hated Laurel. She was created perfectly by Clarke as I have just mentioned but I just wanted to shout at her. She’s just come back from being kidnapped and abused, why is she behaving like a spoiled child and being smug. I think it’s because her character was too nice. She was too polite. Too helpful. Too loving. No one is like that. Which is what made me think that something was up with this character. Something wasn’t right.
The plot twist was fantastic. I think that it was too near the end and that there wasn’t enough build up but it was a brilliant, well thought-out plot twist. The beginning of the book was good and the ending of the book was good, but some of the bits in between felt slow and boring. A thriller is supposed to be fast-paced and keep you guessing. This didn’t. The only time where The Lost and the Found got me curious was just before the plot twist… Near the end.
This was a put-down-pick-up type of book, one where you don’t really fancy reading it all in one go because you just get slightly bored by the storyline. But, I do think that’s because this book is described as a thriller. If this book was pigeon-holed as just a ‘normal’ teen fiction book, then this book would have been better, but to be a thriller a book, it has to be exciting and it has to have more than one shocking element throughout the story, this didn’t.
Overall, The Lost and the Found is a very good book. It has well-rounded characters and a big shock at the end, but the story was slow and didn’t grip me as much as it should have done. I would recommend this book, just don’t expect a thriller.