It was the cover of this book that made me pause and pick it up. The cover is entirely black, with the title The Chain written in blood red. The tagline at the top says: “The only way to get your child back is to kidnap another child.” And there is a swing in the middle of the cover.
In order to get your child back, you need to go kidnap another child. What an interesting and creepy premise I thought. So I bought the book and over two days was fully into it. At the end of the book, I didn’t realize I would be in for an electrifying and shocking read. I allowed myself to go wherever the writer wanted me to go, and I cannot tell you what in the incredibly tense and thrilling journey it has been with the writer.
Rachel is a single mother, whose daughter Kylie is kidnapped. It was just a regular day, like any other. It took just one moment when the mother was away from the daughter, for the little girl to be kidnapped.
Panicking, Rachel reaches out to her friend for help. While this is happening, Rachel receives a phone call from the kidnapper. The instructions are simple: if you want to see your daughter released, you have to go kidnap another child.
This is when Rachel is caught up in the chain. How does one kidnap another child to save their own? How does one plan on who and where to kidnap a child? Do you do it alone or involve someone else too? Do you think about calling the police? How much do you love your child to be able to go this far as kidnapping another child?
This book is a literal page-turner, as I started to realize how much I wanted to know what happens. Who is behind the chain? Does she kidnap the child? Is she able to save her own daughter? More than anything, I wanted to know if Rachel breaks the chain and confront the people behind it.
I won’t spoil anything ending here, but I will say that this book will do for parenting what Gone Girl did for marriages. I was going to suggest some of my friends read this book but then realized it might create some level of paranoia as they are parents.
This book is very similar to The Silent Patient. There are no twists in The Chain but it does lead to a satisfactory ending. In books like these, the ending is what makes or breaks the deal. With a lacklustre ending, one may just end up dissing the book. With an explosive ending, one will remember the book. In The Chain, the ending was satisfactory enough, although in my mind I was beginning to think of another plotline.
The book is not a masterpiece so don’t expect any brilliant writing skills here. In fact, there are some moments when it felt as if a young teenager has written the book. But having said that, it is the intriguing premise that kept me going on to the end.
The book has been taken up to be made into a film and I can already see the film becoming a blockbuster hit because it has all the right ingredients to be one.
Andrew McKinty is one author I have on my watch. I would definitely be reading his next book.