Little Girl Lost by Brian McGilloway

little girlcover.phpLooking for a new mystery? Look no further! Brian McGilloway’s Little Girl Lost is a page turner that I devoured in one day.  Detective Sargent Lucy Black of the Police Service of Northern Ireland is first to respond to a call reporting a girl wandering the woods in the middle of a snowstorm. Black and her colleagues hope this girl is the missing teenage daughter of a wealthy and influential man. The teen was apparently abducted from a busy city street and the police have no clues. Instead, Lucy finds a much younger girl who has blood all over her hands; blood which belongs to someone else. The girl is traumatized and refuses to speak to or acknowledge anyone. She will only respond to Lucy.

Lucy is reassigned to the Public Protection Unit, which deals with cases relating to children at risk, in order to work on the young girl’s case. Lucy is upset over the transfer out of CID to a unit whose focus is not criminal, but more social work. She convinces her new boss she can find out who the girl is and still work on the kidnapping case. On top of this extra work, she is also caring for her aging father, a former policeman who now suffers from Alzheimer’s.

Then nasty secrets from the past begin to surface about events from Northern Ireland’s troubles in the 1990’s, when Lucy’s father’s was still on the force. By week’s end Lucy suspects the two cases could be related in more ways than one.
Weaving in the politics of the past with the heartbreaking work of caring for children at risk and an aging parent, the book is a mystery with a good heart. Lucy’s world is very complicated, and her mixed feelings about returning to the area she grew up in are very believable. What happens will make her doubt all of her memories from childhood.


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