Without a Trace by Lesley Pearse

"I've got a feeling nothing is going to be the same after today."

Title - Without a Trace
Author - Lesley Pearse
Publicaton Date - August 13th 2015
Publisher - Penguin
Format - Paperback (Provided via publisher)
Pages - 416

The blurb

Coronation Day, 1953.

In the Somerset village of Sawbridge, young shopkeeper Molly Heywood slips away from the celebrations to her friend's cottage and makes a shocking discovery: Cassie is dead and her six-year-old daughter Petal has vanished without a trace.

In her grief, Molly seeks help from her childhood friend George, now the village policeman, but no one can find Petal. The only clue is a letter from London, where Cassie once lived. Despite George's reluctance and her growing feelings for him, Molly resolves to go to London in the hope of discovering the missing child.

Arriving in the big city, Molly quickly learns it's a dangerous place for a country girl on her own. But there's hope too - in the Blitz-ruined East End, she unexpectedly finds friendship with strangers from Cassie's past and, with handsome, mysterious workman Charley, the possibility of something more.

However, the closer Molly gets to the truth, the more perilous her journey becomes. She has given up everything - her home, happiness and a chance at love - all to find Petal. 
But is she also risking her life?

Becca's thoughts

Without a Trace by Lesley Pearse was a highly evocative novel, draped in mystery and positively brimming with fierce desperation, powerful love and utter triumph. This is the first novel by this author that I have had the pleasure of reading and I'm thrilled to announce that it certainly won't be the last. I was taken on such a twisting, turning journey throughout my reading of Without a Trace, wrung completely of emotion and breath, so much so that I felt like I'd lived the entire nightmare right beside Molly Heywood, Lesley's heroine within this tale. It was dark, it was mysterious, and it was everything that I, as a reader, normally wouldn't go for, but I seem to be surprising myself more and more just lately and it is such a fantastic feeling when you come across a brand new author and learn that you now have a backlog of their books, as well as any future releases, to look forward to. It is fair to say that after reading this, I will be keeping my bookish eyes peeled for more book news from Lesley Pearse.

 Molly Heywood's journey begins on Coronation Day, 1953. Right from the moment I was introduced to Molly, I warmed to her immediately. Despite having a far from perfect home life, Molly was a young woman who had a heart of gold and she was beautifully loyal too. As Lesley began to unravel the bits and pieces that made up Molly's past and background, I just knew that she was going to be a character who I would be behind throughout the entirety of this novel, agreeing with the choices she made because she had such a good head on her shoulders. Despite the Coronation Day celebrations, Lesley adds such a foreboding tone to her storytelling and it becomes evident that something just doesn't feel right to Molly. Her friend, Cassie, and her daughter, Petal, haven't turned up for the celebrations, and Molly detects right away that something is wrong, which in turns prompts her to grab hold of her bicycle and race through the driving rain to Stone Cottage to see what is going on. Molly is shocked by what she finds, as was I, and chilled to the bone when she realises that Petal is nowhere to be seen or found. This, dear readers, was the moment this glorious novel spiralled out of control and threw me head-first into a tangled web of secrets so expertly weaved, it was impossible to put down for a single moment, and I loved every single second of it.

Lesley Pearse is incredibly skilled when it comes to writing dank atmospheres, dreary circumstances and horrifying turns of events, and I was transported to the dark streets alongside Molly as she tried to find her way. I was absolutely gripped as Molly's journey of discovery progressed, and the things that this poor young woman had to overcome, all for the love of Cassie and Petal. It was clear that Molly's loyalty went far beyond the usual call of friendship and this just made me love her all the more. Of course, along the way, Molly stumbles upon a fantastic array of characters who either help or stop her in her tracks in some way or other, as well as love interests who aren't all they first appear to me. Not forgetting the exciting job opportunities that help her in her search.  

I absolutely loved Without a Trace by Lesley Pearse. It was mysterious, dark and deceptive at times, and throughout, ultimately gripping. I was constantly on edge, waiting for the next clue to be revealed to me, as well as Molly, and found myself holding my breath on more than one occasion. There were so many topics to hold my interest, not just the search for Cassie and Petal, and so with so much going on, I read eagerly right the way through. From Molly's life behind doors with her timid mother and bully of a father, to her best friend George who is now the local policeman. Lesley Pearse delivered a striking story with just the perfect amount of history and mystery to keep me turning those pages. Despite this not being my usual choice of genre to read, I'm thrilled that I didn't let this brilliant novel slip by without diving in and discovering myself a brand new author who I utterly loved!

Becca's Books is awarding Without a Trace by Lesley Pearse with FIVE FANTASTIC CUPCAKES! My only advice to you is, if like me you haven't read anything by this author before, then do it! Lesley Pearse is an author to add to your MUST-BUY list, for sure.

*Special thanks to Lesley Pearse and Penguin UK for providing me with a physical copy of Without a Trace in exchange for a fair and honest review*


  1. Great review Becca!! I really want to read the book now, it sounds so great! :)

    1. Hi lovely!
      I hope you're well? This really was a fantastic book, I'd definitely recommend it! Thank you so much for stopping by xxx