The Darkest Secret by Alex Marwood
Published by Sphere
7th January 2016
My goddaughter, Coco Jackson, disappeared from her family's holiday home in Bournemouth on the night of Sunday/Monday August 29/30th, the bank holiday weekend just gone. Coco is three years old.
When identical twin Coco goes missing during a family celebration, there is a media frenzy. Her parents are rich and influential, as are the friends they were with at their holiday home by the sea.
But what really happened to Coco?
Over two intense weekends - the first when Coco goes missing and the second twelve years later at the funeral of her father - the darkest of secrets will gradually be revealed...
This is the third book written under the pseudonym Alex Marwood, and it’s another corker. I have to say that The Wicked Girls remains one of my favourite crime novels, but this one is up there with it too. Alex is a journalist, and if you read her books, then you just can't help but feel that she has information to some of the most prolific crime cases over the past few decades. Whilst The Wicked Girls sparked off connections in my head to the terrible events surrounding Jamie Bulger, The Darkest Secret brings to mind the more recent case of the disappearance of Madeleine Mccan.
The Darkest Secret is set over two time periods, that of the current day, following the death of much married, and very wealthy Sean Jackson, father of Coco Jackson, who disappeared a decade before when she was three years old; and again, to 2004 when Coco was very much a part of his family life. As a reader we get to meet all the family and friends who made up Sean’s life, from his ex wives, daughters, friends and lovers; they all play a part in this story. As we continue on our journey, we know that Alex Marwood is going to take us right up to the moment that Coco was last seen alive in the family holiday home, and that we might just be privy to what happened to her.
There are a whole host of characters here, and some are very likeable, whilst many of Sean’s friends are just awful. They actually read like real people which doesn’t always happen in some books, but these characters are very much 3-D. As we get to know Sean’s daughters Milla, and Ruby, twin sister of Coco, we learn of their lives and how they have been altered since Coco vanished in 2004. Who at the house that day has something to hide, and after ten years of silence, maybe one of the party thinks it is time to tell the truth?
Miss Chapter x