Without A Trace by Carissa Ann Lynch

Without a Trace by Carissa Ann Lynch

How do you find a little girl who has vanished without a trace if you are not sure whether she even exists?

Without A Trace – The Blurb

Lily’s gone.
Someone took her.
Unless she was she never there…

A little girl has gone missing.
Lily was last seen being tucked into bed by her adoring mother, Nova. But the next morning, the bed is empty except for a creepy toy rabbit. Has Nova’s abusive ex stolen his “little bunny” back for good?

At first, Officer Ellie James assumes this is a clear custody battle. Until she discovers that there are no pictures of the girl and her drawers are full of unused toys and brand new clothes that have never been worn…

Is Ellie searching for a missing child who doesn’t actually exist?”

If you liked Gone Girl…

Without A Trace is delivered from three perspectives. The Mother (Nova), the neighbour (Clara, and the cop (Ellie). All three are potentially unlikable. Yet all three are vulnerable. The chapters are short and snappy with cliff hanger endings meaning you finish the book in no time at all. Lynch has been likened to Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl) and I can understand why. The book has you swinging back and forth like a pendulum not knowing who to believe or what would happen next.

From reading the blurb, I didn’t think it would be possible to carry through with the concept. How can you make the reader question whether a child was real or not? Lynch however carried it off perfectly. One minute I was questioning who had taken Lily, the next I was wondering whether she was a figment of Nova’s troubled mind.


There were some hard hitting subjects covered. Mental health, alcoholism and domestic violence to name but a few. You learn a new thing everyday and when reading Without A Trace I learnt all about knitting groups. Thank goodness I have never needed something like this but I am SO please they exists. I hope there are many more similar lifelines.

I was surprised when I finished the book. For me it could easily have stretched another 20 or so pages to really finish it off. There was also one too many mentions of teeth grinding and hangnail worrying for me but overall I really enjoyed it. It was tense, fast paced and very, very twisty.


My thanks go to Killer Reads via Anne Cater’s Random Things Tours for a copy of Without a Trace in exchange for an honest review. I also need to thank Carissa herself for taking the time to answer Book Social’s questions – you can read the whole interview here but be warned, there are creepy dolls!