The Cry - Helen Fitzgerald

Genre: Thriller
Synopsis: He's gone. And telling the truth won't bring him back...
When a baby goes missing on a lonely roadside in Australia, it sets off a police investigation that will become a media sensation and dinner-table talk across the world. Lies, rumours and guilt snowball, causing the parents, Joanna and Alistair, to slowly turn against each other. Finally Joanna starts thinking the unthinkable: could the truth be even more terrible than she suspected? And what will it take to make things right?


Review: Having recently read (and loved) The Exit, I was keen to dive into more of Helen's wonderful writing. From the outset, The Cry actually proved to be even more enjoyable than The Exit. One of my favourite things about the latter was how dark it was, although it took a little while to really get into the nitty gritty. The thing about The Cry, and what makes it such an unusual thriller, is that you find out a pretty big twist really early one - and it's extremely dark. So the atmosphere of the book turns quite imposing and hopeless early on, but the fallout is compelling and exciting to read.

The writing is phenomenal. I can picture every scene, every character, and more importantly, I can believe all of it. It's just so real, and Helen leaves no stone unturned in her crystal clear presentation of such a convoluted and potentially unwieldy scenario. If for no other reason, her books are worth reading for the immersive, credible joy of her prose.

My biggest issue with this book was the ending. Obviously I'm not going to spoil anything, but I felt that the end did not quite maintain the care of the earlier novel - it felt a tad rushed and underdeveloped. I was surprised, as this runs counter to The Exit, wherein the last chunk of the novel is by far and away the best. That said, this is still an excellent thriller, absolutely worth reading, and it has completely reaffirmed my intention to read everything else Helen Fitzgerald writes.

Rating: 4/5

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