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"Brings to mind Jodi Picoult...thought-provoking domestic drama." - Booklist
“Will make you miss your bedtime, guaranteed.” – Bestselling author Kimberly Belle
Gripping, emotional, and wire-taut, Not Her Daughter raises the question of what it means to be a mother—and how far someone will go to keep a child safe.
Emma Townsend. Five years old. Gray eyes, brown hair. Missing since June.
Emma is lonely. Living with her cruel mother and clueless father, Emma retreats into her own world of quiet and solitude.
Sarah Walker. Successful entrepreneur. Broken-hearted. Kidnapper.
Sarah has never seen a girl so precious as the gray-eyed child in a crowded airport terminal. When a second-chance encounter with Emma presents itself, Sarah takes her—far away from home. But if it’s to rescue a little girl from her damaging mother, is kidnapping wrong?
Amy Townsend. Unhappy wife. Unfit mother. Unsure whether she wants her daughter back.
Amy’s life is a string of disappointments, but her biggest issue is her inability to connect with her daughter. And now Emma is gone without a trace.
As Sarah and Emma avoid the nationwide hunt, they form an unshakeable bond. But what about Emma’s real mother, back at home?
Praise for Not Her Daughter
“The plot twists here are brave, the themes are both poignant and unsettling, and the resolution is deeply resonant. A page-turner with heart!" - New York Times bestselling author Kate Moretti
"A cleverly constructed novel that will have you questioning everything you believe about right or wrong." - New York Times bestselling author Chevy Stevens
"Engrossing and suspenseful, Frey writes her characters with depth and compassion, challenging readers to question their own code of ethics.” - Zoje Stage, author of Baby Teeth
“An emotional ride where the line between right and wrong begins to fade…pulls you in from the very first page, and unlike most in its genre, you won't know how you want it to end until it does.” – Wendy Walker, author of Emma in the Night
Customer ReviewsSee All
It was a good read that made you not want to put it down but it had some major flaws in the story
So unrealistic it’s unreadable. As the mother of real, breathing, human children I found the child on this book SO UNREALISTIC it’s laughable. That she would never even mention the dad and brother she loved and trade five years of them for a flippin stranger even with an appalling mother is insane! And that the reader is supposed to sympathize with the KIDNAPPER was maddening! Just, no. I want to unread it I’m so annoyed. She’s PSYCHOTIC and NARCISSISTIC! You’re not saving her by plucking her from everything she knows you psycho. Just, NO!
Not Her Daughter is a captivating and well-written novel.
Not every woman is cut out to be a mom. Motherhood is challenging, and not for everyone. Amy Townsend is such a mother. She has deep feelings of inadequacy, and, unfortunately, takes her frustrations out on her daughter, Emma. People always remark on how beautiful her daughter is. And, even though, Amy should be happy about her daughter’s beauty and charming personality, she isn’t. She’s jealous.
Although Sarah was happy and successful at work, her heart was broken. The relationship with her long-term boyfriend ended. Sarah couldn’t stand to stay with a man who wouldn’t commit to her. Sarah wanted a husband, a home, and children. She wanted a daughter whom she could love like she should have been, as a child. Sarah, at the age of eight, was abandoned by her mother. So when she witnessed five-year-old, Emma, crying and being abused, it broke Sarah’s heart.
When Sarah came across Emma, being bullied by her mother again, something snapped inside of her. Sarah was aware that kidnapping a child was all-kinds-of-wrong, and against the law. She also knew that she'd go to jail if caught, but she did it, anyway.
Amy reevaluated her life after her daughter went missing. She began to make positive changes. Amy hoped that if her daughter were found, that it wouldn't be too late to build a relationship with her. Amy knew, however, that she had a lot of making up to do.
Although this book left me with unanswered questions, I thoroughly enjoyed the story. Not Her Daughter is a gripping, well-written and engrossing novel. Highly recommended.
Thank you, St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy. I loved it.