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Ninety-Nine Red Balloons

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For fans of Clare Mackintosh, Shari Lapena and Linda Greene, Ninety-Nine Red Balloons begins when eight-year-old Lily has disappeared. As her family is left reeling, secrets and tensions emerge.

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Elisabeth Carpenter


Two girls go missing, decades apart. What would you do if one was your daughter?

Eight-year-old Grace is last seen in a sweetshop. Her mother Emma is living a nightmare. But as her loved ones rally around her, cracks begin to emerge. What are the emails sent between her husband and her sister? Why does her mother take so long to join the search? And is there more to the disappearance of her daughter than meets the eye?

Meanwhile, ageing widow Maggie Sharples sees a familiar face in the newspaper. A face that jolts her from the pain of her existence into a spiralling obsession with another girl – the first girl who disappeared…

This is a gripping psychological thriller with a killer twist that will take your breath away.


‘This sharp, poignant domestic noir is like watching a snake slither towards its prey. You want to look away but somehow you can’t stop looking. Carpenter emerges as an addictive new talent, climbing inside the characters and opening them up for the reader to devour. What a wonderful debut!’
Helen Fields, author of Perfect Remains

‘I loved this book. It is a thoroughly satisfying page turning read, full of characterisation and pathos. The empathy I felt towards the characters is to me, for a crime novel, what makes it stand out. I also think it is very well written and the plot is seamless.’
Amanda Robson, author of Obsession

‘Intense domestic thriller, twists and turns galore, and a host of family secrets. An absorbing read.’
Paul Finch, Sunday Times bestselling author of Strangers

‘A wonderfully assured debut about every parent’s darkest nightmare – expertly weaving a family’s story together with a real sense of tension and some great twists. Highly recommended.’
TM Logan, author of Lies