Claire Douglas, author of The Sisters, returns with an equally dark and creepy psychological thriller in Local Girl Missing.

Readers will rapidly become immersed in the story of two childhood friends, Frankie Howe and Sophie Collier. Sophie’s story is told in chapters that are diary excerpts from a time before she went missing.

Sophie disappeared and has been presumed dead for twenty years. Then Frankie, now managing her parents hotels in London, gets a call from Sophie’s brother, Daniel. Remains have been found near the old pier in their homemtown where Sophie disappeared. Daniel is awaiting DNA results and asks Frankie to travel back home to help him discover what really happened to Sophie.

How can she not go? Despite her father ailing with a severe stsroke, Frankie risks her mother’s disapproval to travel home to the seaside town where the three of them were raised. Daniel finds her a flat to stay in for the days she’s there, and the two start by talking to those who knew Sophie when she died, and still live or have returned to the area.

This includes Leon, that young man Sophie loved, and while Frankie soon becomes afraid of him, she can’t disappoint Daniel by leaving him to face things alone. It’s a complicated time, made worse by threatening letters Frankie starts receiving and glimpes of Sophie. Is it her ghost, coming back to warn Frankie?

Drinking heavily, upset by the memories, and afraid of the future, Frankie breaks off her relationship in London and thinks she just might be falling in love with Daniel.

This is a twisted tour de force of plotting and complexities, where no one is who or how they seem at first glance. A page-turner.