15th Mar2013

Book Review – Just What Kind of Mother Are You?

by Lloyd Paige

What Kind of Mother Are You? by Paula Daly


She’s gone and it’s your fault. You were supposed to be watching your best friend’s 13-year-old daughter, and now she’s missing.

But you know she’s not just missing – she’s been taken. Because Lucinda is the second girl to be abducted within a fortnight. And the first was found on a busy high street, naked and severely traumatised. No one expects the next to be so lucky.

You’re going to have to figure this out – who did it. Because if you don’t, then Lucinda will be next. And you’ll never forgive yourself.


Paula Daly is a freelance Physiotherapist from Cumbria.

Lisa Kallisto is a busy and overwhelmed mother from Troutbeck, east of Lake Windermere. All busy mums know what it’s like don’t they? Wake the kids up, fix them breakfast, get ready for work and send them off to school. What they don’t expect on life’s busy treadmill, is to lose their best friend’s child. So when Lucinda Riverty disappears, no one wants to be in Lisa’s shoes. Because Lisa took her eye off the ball and blames herself, running a gauntlet of hate too as the guilt makes her want to help. Not surprisingly, her assistance isn’t wanted by those affected.

The case is investigated by DC Joanne Aspinall, a down the middle officer that wants to have a breast reduction – these things happen, and while the investigation proceeds, we delve further into the make up of the afflicted family and the abducted girl in question. Yet, we’re not allowed to relax for a minute because the tension is heightened throughout the book by a disconcerting voice of terror and a secret from the past rears its head, adding to Lisa’s already vulnerable state. Other girls go missing and the whole affair affects the community which in itself, forces the exploration of friendships.

Of course what makes Lisa engaging in all of this is that she’s not leading the official charge, she’s the eyes and ears for the reader to follow, for us to empathise with as a normal everyday person trying to fix the mess. So after a few twists, she finds herself right in the thick of it for the grand finale, confronted with something she never ever imagined possible.

Just What kind of Mother Are You? sails along smoothly from the first page to the last. Throughout Lisa’s guilt, her reconnection with her husband, and her desperation to find out what happened to Lucinda. It’s a fascinating debut by Paula Daly that doesn’t let you go and by the end, Lisa will finally know exactly just what kind of mother she really is, and others too.

Just What Kind of Mother Are You? will be published on April 25th by Bantam Press.


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