Don’t look away
No one wants to be the mother whose child disappears. It’s unthinkable, the stuff of nightmares. But when she turns her back to pay a parking meter, Carrie Morgan becomes that mother. Ben is gone, and more than a year later, it’s clear that he is never coming back.
Until he does…for just twenty-four hours, before once again vanishing from his crib without a trace. Rumors start to circulate through Carrie’s small town. Whispers that she’s seeing things. That her alibi doesn’t quite add up.
Her husband and friends start to think she’s crazy. The police start to think she’s guilty. As the investigation heats up, Carrie must decide what to share, and why. Because the crime is about to be solved… and her secret revealed.
A grieving mother confronts her past in Simmons's strange, wrenching ghost story. It's been over a year since Carrie Morgan's two-year-old son, Ben, disappeared, and she and her husband, John, are no closer to healing. When Ben suddenly reappears in his crib, they're overjoyed, but puzzled that he hasn't appeared to have grown an inch or gained an ounce while he's been gone. Then, just as quickly, he's gone again. Over the course of the week that follows, Carrie is visited by more figures from her past, some more welcome, and friendlier, than others: a beloved grandmother, an ex-boyfriend, a detective who worked on Ben's case. Each one forces her to confront an aspect of her past, enables a small amount of closure, and nudges her ever closer to answers about Ben's disappearance, even as everyone around her believes she's finally lost her mind. The rules of this universe are a little uneven, and odd interludes from a different narrative voice only muddy the waters, but Simmons hits the right emotional notes when describing Carrie's grief and disorientation. Clever readers might piece together the approaching ending, but the potential predictability of the resolution doesn't necessarily lessen its impact.