cover image Forgotten


Nicole Trope. Allen & Unwin (IPG, dist.), $19.95 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-1-76029-677-3

This captivating, if contrived, domestic noir from Australian author Trope (The Boy Under the Table) focuses on three women, each of whom must contend with the pain and the anguish that come from a tragedy involving a young child. Thanks to a largely absent husband, Sydney mom Malia Ellis has her hands full with three small children: five-year-old Aaron, three-year-old Rhiannon, and five-month-old Zach. One day, Malia leaves Zach unattended in her unlocked car for a few minutes to buy milk at a 7-Eleven, and when she returns, he is gone. The second woman, who steals Zach, is obviously disturbed; she’s an ex-convict whose name, crime, and own tragedy are slowly revealed, as is Zach’s fate. The third woman is Det. Sgt. Ali Greenberg, who persuades her reluctant boss to give her the case, despite his doubts given Ali’s own similar experience. Indeed, her own guilt and fears color every step of her investigation. Trope tightly braids the stories of these three women into a melodramatic but moving tale of loss, growth, and hope. (June)