Finding Emma by Steena Holmes

 

17074570Finding Emma by Steena Holmes
Publisher/Year: 
Amazon Publishing, 2012
Format: Paperback
Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Goodreads

 

 

 

 

Synopsis

“Emma!” Megan ran outside calling her daughter’s name. She stopped in the middle of the driveway and scanned the area. Nothing. She wasn’t chasing butterflies, pulling flowers out of the garden, or playing with dandelions. She wasn’t anywhere. Megan screamed as loud as she could as tears streamed down her face. Emma was gone.

The last time Megan saw her youngest daughter, Emma, was on the little girl’s third birthday. Now, two years later, she sees her daughter’s face in every blonde girl she passes–at the grocery store, in car windows, at the doctor’s office. She is determined to find her daughter, but her commitment borders on obsession as she finds herself following these little girls who resemble her missing daughter.

Her inability to move on after Emma’s kidnapping has distanced Megan from her friends and family. Her two older daughters resent her relentless and fruitless search for their sister, and her husband, Peter, pleads with her to come to terms with Emma’s absence before her obsession causes the destruction of the rest of their family.

Meanwhile, in the same small town, Jack dotes on his granddaughter, Emmie, but has begun to question his wife, Dottie’s, secrecy about Emmie and her mother, Mary. As Dottie slips into dementia, Jack can’t help wonder if there is a dark secret Dottie is keeping from him.

Jack and Megan’s lives collide at the town fair when Megan snaps a photograph of a little girl with her grandparents–an act that could lead to catastrophe for both families.

What I thought

I have to admit, I’m actually surprised by how much I ended up enjoying this book. Although I did have a few issues (which I’ll get into), I thought Finding Emma was a great read.

It is on the “lighter” side of “missing child” stories, but it was still a heartwrenching read. It was definitely predictable, but I still enjoyed reading this. I knew the “whodunit,” but found I had a very difficult time putting the book down because I had to know how it was all going to come together. Like I said, even though it was heartwrenching, raw, and honest, there was still a certain quaint and hopeful feeling. This read like something you’d watch on Hallmark, and I mean that in the best way. I was actually really pleased with that because I was hesitant to read this story anyway because I was afraid it would be too heavy of a read for me right now.

Another thing that pleasantly surprised me was how much I enjoyed Holmes’ writing. Whether anyone likes to admit it or not, there is a stigma surrounding self-published works. But for a self-published author, I found this story to be compulsively readable & emotionally moving.

My only complaint (which really isn’t a big deal, just a personal preference) was that I didn’t really <i>like</i> Megan or Dottie most of the time. I sympathized with them, for the most part, but I thought Megan seemed kind of self-absorbed & I thought Dottie seemed, frankly, kinda mean. But again, putting it in perspective, both characters were dealing with pretty serious issued & they acted like any human would. Maybe not happy-go-lucky, exactly, but then again who really would be? Personally, my favorite characters were Jack & Emma. I’m looking forward to hopefully seeing them in the next book.

If you are looking for a book revolving around family dynamics, the things that make or break us, despair, hope, and most importantly, love–this is your book. This is not a mystery or a thriller, but rather an emotionally moving story of two families in the aftermath of a child gone missing. Now, I need book #2!

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