The Forgotten Girls by Sara Blaedel
Louise Rick recently became the new Commander of the Missing Persons Department, transferring from Copenhagen Homicide. On her first day on the job a body of a young woman is found in the woods near Louise’s childhood home. It appears that the woman slipped from a rise overlooking the lake and fell to her death. But it’s been days and no one has come forward to identify the body. The woman should be easily recognizable since she has burn scars covering half of her face. Finally a woman calls in a tip. She recognized the burns as belonging to a girl she cared for in a facility for the mentally handicapped many years before. The body belongs to a “forgotten girl,” one of the twins left at the facility and abandoned by her family. When Louise follows up on the tip she discovers that the twins died thirty years before. Is the body truly that of one of the twins? If so, where is the other? Before Louise can wrap her head around this case another woman is found dead in the woods, brutally raped and murdered. Are the cases connected? What is going on?!
My only complaint is that I didn’t discover this author sooner! A tight, well-crafted thriller that keeps you guessing yet ties everything together really well. All the characters are three-dimensional, something rare in most thrillers. At one point, very late in the book, you have an inkling what is going on, but if you’re like me you try to convince yourself that it can’t be right. One of the most disturbing motives I’ve read in a long time. This one will stay with you long after you put it down.