Finders Keepers (Exmoor Trilogy #3) – Belinda Bauer

The eight-year-old boy had vanished from the car and—as if by slick, sick magic—had been replaced by a note on the steering wheel: “You don’t love him.”

At the height of summer a dark shadow falls across Exmoor, as children begin to disappear, with each disappearance marked only by a terse, accusatory note.

There are no explanations, no ransom demands, and no hope.

Policeman Jonas Holly (a character returning from Bauer’s first two novels) faces a precarious journey into the warped mind of the kidnapper if he’s to stand any chance of catching him. But—still reeling from a personal tragedy—is Jonas really up to the task? There are some who would say that, when it comes to being the first line of defense, Jonas Holly may be the last man to trust.

Book Info: 399 pages. Publisher: Transworld Digital. Publication Date: 5 Jan 2021

Belinda Bauer grew up in England and South Africa and now lives in Wales. She worked as a journalist and a screenwriter before finally writing a book to appease her nagging mother. With her debut, Blacklands, Belinda was awarded the CWA Gold Dagger for Crime Novel of the Year. She went on to win the CWA Dagger in the Library for her body of work in 2013. Her fourth novel Rubbernecker was voted 2014 Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year. In 2018 her eighth novel, Snap, was longlisted for the Man Booker prize. Her books have been translated into 21 languages. She has also written the thriller High Rollers under the pen-name Jack Bowman.

My Review:

I’ve been on a mission to read Belinda Bauer’s back catalogue and Finders Keepers is the final book in the incredible Exmoor Trilogy. They say “leave the best till last” and in my opinion, that is exactly what Belinda has done.

Set in the same village as the previous 2 books, Finders Keepers begins one year after the tragic events of Darkside. If you haven’t read the previous books, I would strongly recommend you start with Blacklands now because these books NEED to be read in order to fully understand and appreciate the complex characters living in Shipcott.

If possible, Finders Keepers is the darkest of the 3 books, with a spate of abducted children, the people of Shipcott are terrified with good reason. It’s probably not the luckiest place to live with a history of violence and murder.

I don’t want to spoil anything for you, but Jonas Holly is back, fighting his own demons but determined to find the abducted children. Stephen Lamb, now a young man on the cusp of adulthood, doesn’t want the past to shape his future, gets caught up in the latest crime spree with horrific consequences.

Finders Keepers brings a violent and horrifying conclusion to the trilogy set in this little village and lovers of crime will not be disappointed.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

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