Thriller lovers are well-acquainted with the name Lisa Jewell. She’s a multiple number one New York Times bestselling author—and a master of suspense. In works like Then She Was Gone and The Family Upstairs, she’s been routinely praised for her ability to combine family drama with edge-of-your-seat thrills—a skill that brings readers back again and again. Her latest work, The Night She Disappeared, is out in paperback on May 3!
Jewell has published 19 novels in her career, and her 20th, The Family Remains, is set to release this summer. Jewell finds the thriller genre very compelling, especially due to its ability to leave the reader eager to know more. “It’s like when you go out for drinks with a friend,” Jewell said, “and in advance, they say, ‘have I got some juicy stuff to share with you tonight’ and you have that sense of anticipation and you’re all ears, in listening mode and you say, ‘well, go on, spill’, and just wait for the story to unfold.”
When it was released in hardback on September 7, 2021, The Night She Disappeared was an instant New York Times bestseller. Jewell is on her a-game here. She’s even called the book a “textbook Lisa Jewell novel” since it contains her favorite themes to explore.
Many of her works include the theme of coercive control. “The idea of one human being controlling another human being without using physical violence or restraint is endlessly fascinating to me,” Jewell said. Another major theme is what Jewell calls “the Secrets That Lie Behind Front Doors”: homes that seem picture-perfect on the outside but are actually filled with secrets and darkness.
The Night She Disappeared
The Night She Disappeared follows Sophie, a writer, who moves into a cottage next to a massive country estate in England. One year prior, Tallulah, a teenage mother, and her boyfriend went to a party at her friend Scarlett’s house on that same estate and disappeared without a trace at some point during the festivities. No one could find any clues, and the couple hasn’t been seen or heard from since. But no matter how much time passes, the girl’s mother, Kim, refuses to give up the search.
Separating Sophie’s cottage from the estate is a dense forest that locals call the Dark Place. Since she’s a mystery writer, Sophie enjoys walking through the woods as she dreams of plots and new twists and turns. But one day, she stumbles onto a mystery that is all too real when she finds a note that reads “DIG HERE.”
Does this note have a connection to the missing couple? Launching an investigation of her own, Sophie will discover a labyrinth of twisted secrets.
Jewell says she’s most excited for readers to meet Scarlett and Tallulah. She described Scarlett as “a grey area character, [...] you can never be sure what her intentions are and what she is capable of.” The character of Tallulah, on the other hand, was a chance for Jewell to explore teenage motherhood in a more positive way than most stories we hear about the subject.
If that sounds intriguing, we recommend you pick up a copy of The Night She Disappeared. With Jewell’s signature thrills and suspense, we guarantee you won’t be able to put it down!