April, 1942. Amid the chaos of a night of bombing in Bath, six-year-old Davy Noyle goes missing. Frances Parry, looking after him at the time, is tortured by guilt and refuses to believe that he's dead.
As quiet falls and the dust begins to settle on the damaged city, a body is found. But it's the body of a little girl, Frances's best friend Wyn, who has been missing for over twenty years.
As Frances continues her search for Davy, this new discovery leads her back to her childhood, and forces her to revisit a crime that has cast a shadow over her life. This time, she vows to uncover the truth, however dark it might be.
...[An] intricately plotted, beautifully written novel.
Focusing on a subject that is as relevant today as it was then, Frances has always struggled to come to terms with the puzzling disappearance of her best friend Wyn over 20 years ago. But when bombs begin falling on Bath, the past is quite literally unearthed, leading Frances down a disturbing path of guilt and long-buried secrets. In Frances, Webb has crafted a believable heroine whose courage and capacity for empathy is astounding.
Women's Weekly Magazine
'Evocative. Totally transporting. This is a rich and delicious multi-layered read.'
Eve Chase - Author
'I couldn’t have loved it more. Riveting, haunting, beautifully written... a stunner!'
Jenny Ashcroft - Author
'It was the greatest pleasure to read - suspenseful but so beautifully, sensitively written. Gripping, heart-wrenching and painfully real. An absolute triumph. I want to get on a train to Bath today and wander around the locations, because I'm not ready to leave the story! This one is an absolute gem; so blooming cleverly plotted, so perfectly pitched emotionally… It crosses genre between historical, psychological suspense, thriller, romance.'
Iona Grey - Author
'A beautifully written and emotionally involving mystery with a richly described dual-timeline, set in 1918 and 1942. A multi-layered, gripping and evocative read - highly recommended!'
Amanda Jennings - Author
Katherine Webb has the rare gift of being able to create wholly convincing period settings and characters for whatever book she writes. Clues are gradually exposed in this intriguing family mystery. A heartbreaking story of letting go, of love, and of redemption.
Historical Writers' Association
I can’t recommend this book enough. It’s wonderful. If you love historical fiction, mystery and romance you’ll love this book. Even if you don’t love these things, still read it. It’s just that good.
Full review: https://jthbookreviews.home.blog/2019/05/16/arc-book-review-the-disappearance-by-katherine-webb/
JTH Book Reviews
'I loved this book. The dual-timeframe story of two mysteries was totally compelling, with complex layers of memory, tragedy and drama. I was rooting for Frances all the way through. The poignancy of Davy and his general sense of neglect really got to me! I keep thinking about his "pale bewildered" last look. Heart wrenching! The cast of characters was finely honed and the streets and scenes around Bath were so well drawn, I could picture every event. This novel was buzzing with life and meaning, by a writer at the height of her powers.'
Rebecca Mascull - author
'Katherine Webb has done it again with this wonderful wartime story, complete with three-dimensional characters you care about; a mystery that keeps you turning the pages; and her trademark elegant prose. Her books are always a huge treat and The Disappearance is no exception.'
Kate Riordan - author
'Immersive, powerful, and beautifully written, The Disappearance had me hooked from the first to the last page. I loved it.'
Judith Kinghorn - author