The Ones You Trust
I have always had Caroline Overington (The One Who Got Away, The Lucky One) on my ‘to-read’ list, but this was the first of her books I picked up – and I am glad I did. I absolutely love mysteries, and The Ones You Trust is particularly intriguing because of its realism. Many of the characters are molded from actual Australian celebrities. It had me on edge, speeding through the pages. It’s also an uncharacteristic ‘lighter’ read in the sense that it’s not a long book and doesn’t have a gruesome undertone to it.
The story begins with Emma Cardwell. She’s a well-known host of the morning TV show, Cuppa which closely resembles Australian morning television. When her youngest daughter Fox-Piper goes missing, the media instantly picks up the story and the hunt begins. Emma, her husband, and their two young sons are immediately joined at their home by Police who are eager to find the missing girl. The premise lies in whether or not we can trust those closest to us.
The suspense is divided into three parts - before, during and after Fox-Piper’s disappearance. Each part flows smoothly into the next and makes for pleasurable reading. The story is told largely from Emma’s perspective, but there are also chapters recounted by Police and those around Emma.
As well as being an author, Overington has an impressive career in journalism, and her experience in current affairs definitely made this suspense a winner in my eyes. The characters and events feel very real due to the fact-based way The Ones You Trust is crafted. It’s as though they were pulled from articles that Overington has recently written. It’s as much a mystery about a missing child as a commentary about the news media machine.
The only thing I thought could have been stronger was the ending, not because it was without unexpected twists, but because it felt quite rushed compared to the rest of the story. It was as though Overington had put all of her thought and energy into the unfolding mystery and wasn’t as interested in the resolution. The story came to a close in only a few chapters. The Ones You Trust itself isn’t terribly long, and I think more narrative through the ending would have rounded it out nicely.
Overall, the thriller is a great read, and I will be passing my copy onto friends and family. It left me feeling like I’d just run a marathon. It has definitely reframed my ideas about trusting people too easily and made me look at who I let my guard down with and whether they are really people I should be putting my trust into. This is a light, fast-paced intrigue that kept me up reading late into the night.