Author Jacqueline Ward
Publisher Kindle Press
I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review
DS Jan Pearce is still searching for her missing son. When she finds a little girl, Elise, alone in a pram in a busy town centre, she must unravel a mystery that takes her to the edge of her emotions. Then another child, Dara Price, goes missing.
Lisa Connelly, Elise’s mother, has been forced into a life of prostitution and has been leaving her little girl alone. Her gangland boss is holding her prisoner but she wants her little girl back.
Jan finds herself balancing her search for her son with finding Dara. Her right hand man, Mike Waring, is on another case so she and her temporary partner, profiler Damien Booth, must solve the puzzle and find Lisa before time runs out for Dara.
What did I think?
‘Playlist for a Paper Angel’ took me by complete surprise, it was a little bit slow to begin with but Ward didn’t keep you waiting for long. Once the story was in motion there was no stopping, and that accounts for my reading too – I couldn’t put it down!
Considering this book has an incredibly dark story-line that I think a lot will struggle to read at times, Ward approached the subjects in a respectful way while making sure they still hit hard. You start to connect with the characters and the emotions that you feel throughout are strengthened by the relationships you’ve built.
‘Playlist for a Paper Angel’ doesn’t stop at any point, it keeps on going until the very last sentence and it keeps you wanting more. I felt emotionally drained when I finished ‘Playlist for a Paper Angel’ and I didn’t expect it in the slightest. Ward is an extremely talented author and ‘Playlist for a Paper Angel’ is a great example of what a thriller should be, I loved every minute of it.
My Rating? ♥♥♥♥♥
Will you be adding this to your TBR pile?
Q&A with Jacqueline Ward
Where did you find the inspiration for ‘Playlist for a Paper Angel’? The inspiration for Playlist for a Paper Angel came from the Ed Sheeran song ‘The A Team’. Lisa appeared in the previous Jan Pearce novel ‘Random Acts of Kindness’ as a member of the Connelly family who had gone into police protection and I was interested in what might have happened to her. I find inspiration from lots of different places but stories in music influences me a lot.
How did you develop the characters and plot? I developed the plot over a long time. Jan’s story had to progress in the direction of looking for Aiden, but I wanted a storyline where she and Mike get closer and she is teamed up with another police operative. Lisa’s was more difficult. I had ideas for her character and I read other novels and watched films about young girls who had limited choices. I also wanted to introduce Della, Mike’s wife as she is an interesting character.
What was the hardest part to write? The hardest part of this novel to write was all the parts involving children. It’s hard to write bad things about children in fiction – they happen in the real world but it’s hard to find a balance between being gratuitous and telling a story. I hope I have done the latter.
What were your goals/intentions with ‘Playlist for a Paper Angel‘ and do you think you’ve achieved them? Mothering is often stereotyped and, as a subtext, I wanted to look at how mothers have different types of lives and how they look after their children with the resources they have, and how external aspects of life influence. Part of this novel looked at how the criminal world takes advantage of young people who are drawn to the peripherals, and I hope I achieved that.
‘Playlist for a Paper Angel‘ has a very, very dark story-line that evokes a lot of emotions. How did you find writing such a dark story? It was difficult. I had to interview women who worked in the sex industry and learn about their experiences – despite what the media often report, not one of them told me that they had voluntarily entered the industry, rather that they had either been forced because of financial problems or had progressed from no sex industry roles. None of them were happy, and it made me realise how privileged I was and also that in this day and age it it horrendous that women still have to do this. Writing Lisa’s story was underpinned by this darkness and it brought up a lot of emotions.
Will we be hearing more from DS Jan Pearce? Yes! Jan isn’t finished yet – she’s only just started. I have a series prologue novel due out soon and a third DS Jan Pearce novel later on in 2017.
I for one cannot wait to read more of DS Jan Pearce’s story!