EXCERPT: The back of the house was silent and dark, the fence rotten with water. He moved quickly through the garden, his chest tightening as he got nearer. And now – why hadn’t he watched more carefully? – he saw that along the metal frame of the broken old annexe flies gathered like clusters of hanging black fruit, rippling lazily.
He used his Swiss army knife to gouge away the ancient putty of the kitchen window, flaking wood and paint onto his sweatshirt. Levering out the panel pins, he eased the pane from the frame and the stale trapped air inside the house came at him like a train. He could smell what was in the bathroom – the stench that stimulates the rarely stimulated root of humanness – the smell of opened human bowels, the smell of the dead sitting up in their graves and exhaling into the night. He could hear the flies – No way, no fucking way, this can’t be happening – as he reached in, turned the key and opened the back door.
ABOUT THIS BOOK: A quiet residential street in south London.
A husband and wife are discovered, imprisoned in their own home. Badly dehydrated, they’ve been bound and beaten. He is close to death. But worse is to come: their young son is missing.
When Detective Inspector Jack Caffery is called in to investigate, the similarities with events in his own past make it impossible for him to view this new crime dispassionately.
And as he digs deeper – as he attempts to hold his own life together in the face of ever more disturbing revelations about both his past and his present – the real nightmare begins …
MY THOUGHTS: Mo Hayder certainly doesn’t pull any punches with her writing. It is brutal and raw, at times quite shocking. It is dark and ugly. But there is nothing in there that isn’t happening in our society. And that is the important thing to remember. It happens. We can’t pretend it doesn’t. And perhaps the more we, the public, know about how these people (and I use the word ‘people’ very loosely) operate and think, the more aware we are, the more effective we can be in preventing this abomination.
The characters are complex. At times I was yelling at Jack, ‘No! Don’t do this!’ even though I could understand why he was doing what he did. And Rebecca, damaged, and struggling with her secret. There is more than one moral dilemma in this book. And, strangely enough, a little humor (the judgemental workman, completely unaware of what he has witnessed).
I can’t say that I enjoyed this book, but it did what I think it was probably intended to do.
Please be aware that this book refers to and describes paedophilia, at times graphically.
THE AUTHOR:Hayder left school at fifteen. She worked as a barmaid, security guard, film-maker, hostess in a Tokyo club, educational administrator and teacher of English as a foreign language in Asia. She has an MA in film from The American University in Washington DC and an MA in creative writing from Bath Spa University UK.
Mo lives in Bath with her daughter Lotte-Genevieve.
DISCLOSURE: I own my copy of The Treatment by Mo Hayder, published by Transworld Publishers, Bantam Press. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.
Please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the about page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com for an explanation of my rating system. This review and others are also published on my Goodreads.com page https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1250810769