Pretty Little Things – Jilliane Hoffman

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I’m not going to overthink this review because I’ll end up picking the book apart and I really just want to go on how it made me feel. I really loved this book.

Teenage girls from across Miami are going missing. The bodies of  these missing teenage girls then start showing up, mutilated and tortured, and the killer wants to taunt Bobby Dees. Special Agent Bobby Dees heads up the Florida’s Crimes Against Children squad and is tasked with finding missing children, he’s viewed as a hero, giving families closure. When another girl goes missing, thirteen year old Lainey Emerson, everyone writes her off as a runaway, but Dees thinks that something suspicious is going on. Each new corpse that is discovered reveals more clues about more missing girls – more than the FBI even considered. Just how many girls does this warped killer have? How many are already dead? Where is he keeping them?

I got goosebumps reading this, Lainey is every girl. We’ve all spoken to someone we don’t know in person, online. We’re all aware of the dangers in the back of our minds – and the worst outcome happens to her. It’s something that could easily happen to anyone who gets sucked in by an online romance. When Lainey was in captivity my heart was in my throat, I wanted her to survive, to fight, to be found. But this book also kept me on my toes, so I couldn’t know if that’s how it was all going to play out. I did not see the twists coming. With Romance novels- you know there’s a happy ending, but with suspense thrillers, anything can happen.

Dees also has his own issues, he’s not quite the hero everyone thinks he is. His marriage is falling apart after his own daughter went missing a year ago, now they’re drifting apart, as they both silently blame themselves. I kept wanting his daughter, Katy, to show up, but I also didn’t – because it would mean the murderer had her.

It’s complex, gripping and full of suspense. I didn’t want to put it down. I finished reading this in just under four hours, on my breaks in work. I was drawn in, freaked out and suspicious of everyone in the novel. It’s a clear 5 stars from me.

 

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