Missing by Alison Moore


One of my most anticipated reads for 2018 was Missing, the latest novel by Alison Moore. Alison is one of my favourite authors and I always look forward to reading her latest work. And the premise of this novel is an intriguing one, as we meet a woman who is haunted by memories from her past.

Jessie Noon lives on the Scottish Borders, having moved home in the aftermath of a family tragedy. With her husband having walked out a year ago, and their son being out of her life for even longer, she lives with only a cat and a dog to keep her company. And as she carries on with her daily routine, she is haunted by a presence within her home, convinced that there is a ghost in the spare room. As her story progresses we go back in time and witness past events unfold which are significant to Jessie, memories which cannot be erased and which linger throughout as she lives on. Jessie is an interesting character, and working as a translator she agonises over her choice of words, understanding how crucial it is to pick the right ones, both in her story and in that of others.

I love Alison Moore’s writing style and the way she portrays life and all its complexity and fragility. And in Jessie we meet a woman who is trying to exist, trying to continue living her life the best she can in the wake of tragic circumstances. I was immediately captivated by this story and managed to read it in only a couple of sittings. I was intrigued to see how events would unfold, both in the past and the present, as old relationships are broken and new ones are formed. I enjoyed the use of different timelines, and of the presence of a voice making their way back to Jessie, leaving messages that they are to return home. This is a gripping story which explores a life hit by tragedy, and how those affected can live on in its wake. It is an honest, and moving story, and one which deals with the importance of communication, and the balance between life and death.

I really enjoyed Missing, and found it to be a perfectly written story in which we explore the life of its protagonist in all its complexity, as we uncover the layers to her character, and the power of memory. Missing was published on 15th May by Salt Publishing, with thanks to the publisher for providing a copy for review.

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