Close to Home (DI Adam Fawley Series Book 1) by Cara Hunter [Book Review]

amazon ID: jabberjaw-20


It’s 2016, July in Oxford, England, and The Masons are having a bar-b-que for the parents and kids of the local school. It’s a way for Sharon to get to know Daisy’s classmates and their parents. Barry Mason is cooking on the grill, while Sharon is trying to be the life of the party. Their son Leo is just being Leo.


Eight-year-old Daisy Mason has been reported missing. She was last seen wearing a mermaid customer, but it’s not her usual costume. Her usual costume is Daisey, like her name. Her room is made up of daisies. The Masons say they saw Daisy running around the yard during the bar-b-que but can’t say for sure because neither of them paid that close attention. The brother, Leo, can’t be sure either because he was too occupied with something else. DI Adam Fawley and DC Gislingham arrive to get more information about the disappearance and anything else that will help with the investigation. But the parents are dodgy and Leo (age 10)..well, Leo is just Leo.


DI (Detective Inspector) Fawley is still dealing with the loss of his son Jake, who passed away a year earlier. Therefore, this case hits a bit home for him. The loss of a child, no matter the case, at times, is a bit too much for him to handle. Fawley wants to solve the case quickly. DC (Detective Constable) Gislingham just wants to solve the case. With many other players from the police department on the case, it becomes a cat-and-mouse game with the Masons, minus Leo.

Barry is hiding things and Sharon could careless about her missing daughter. Sharon’s only concern is how she looks when she’s at the police station and definitely how she looks in front of the camera when she’s supposed to be there pleading for the safe return of her daughter, Daisy. Everything for Sharon is perception. She’s more concern with how people will view her than hoping to find her daughter alive. Barry is concerned with finding Daisy alive, but with trying to hide is own secrets, showing his concern stars to fade into the background.


I was convinced who had something to do with Daisy’s disappearance but wasn’t too sure if she would be found dead or alive. The latter would remain a question until the very end of the book, and I do mean the very end. As for who is the culprit, just when I had someone made, more suspects come into play. About midway through the book, things become complicated and a bit confusing. As someone whose attention span is rather short, I started to lose track of who was who. And when a new character was introduced, I really became confused. But that has nothing to do with the writing.  This is strictly me. To adjust I found myself rereading a sentence or a paragraph again, which is a good thing for I picked up on certain things the second time around.


The story is told through the eyes of DI Fawley. We are taking this journey and investigation into the disappearance of Daisy Mason with him and his colleagues. The story is told as each day passes. Some mystery books will tell the story with a few days or months passing, but Close To Home didn’t do that. If DI Fawley went home, you went home with him. If he got a phone call in the middle of the night, you got the phone call with him. Going this route with the book really shows the frustration the police face when solving missing children cases.

When there were interviews going on at the station, it was written like a script. You felt like you were on the other side of the two-way mirror witnessing the whole thing.


Flashbacks are told throughout the book titled 27 days before the disappearence, or 55 days before the disappearance. I liked how the days were in chronological order. It starts out 27 days then a few chapters down it could be 57 days and few more down it could be 40 days. This book made you sit up and take note of what was happening those days before Daisy disappeared. The different interactions Daisy had with her father and mother. The kids at school. The parents of the kids she went to school with. We are shown Sharon’s childhood to an extent as we are shown Barry’s life before Sharon. The flashback of Sharon just made me dislike her even more.


This was a book hard to put down. From the first page until the very last (read the Epilogue as well, please), I was intrigued. I love a good mystery, suspense book, but this one is by far my favorite and looking forward to the second book in the DI Adam Fawley series. I have been touch with the author is going to try to get me an advanced copy of the second book for my review.


I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good mystery, suspense book. I promise you won’t be disappointed. But you must know the slang of the English people.

Fag is used a lot throughout the book. Fag means cigarette. I bring this up because if you didn’t you know what fag meant, you would be bit bothered by Fawley needing a fag.

Sod 1(British English, taboo, slang) used to refer to a person, especially a man, that you are annoyed with or think is unpleasant You stupid sod! (British English, taboo, slang) used with an adjective to refer to a person, especially a man The poor oldsod got the sack yesterday. You lucky sod(Oxford Learn’s Dictionary).

You can purchase the book by clicking on the book’s title Close to Home: A Novel (A DI Adam Fawley Novel) / 314 pages, published by Penguin Books on 6 March 2018.

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