Dear Amy: A Novel

Dear Amy: A Novel

by Helen Callaghan

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Overview

In Helen Callaghan’s chilling, tightly-spun debut novel of psychological suspense, a teenage girl’s abduction stirs dark memories of a twenty-year-old cold case...

Margot Lewis is a teacher at an exclusive high school in the English university town of Cambridge. In her spare time, she writes an advice column, “Dear Amy”, for the local newspaper.

When one of Margot’s students, fifteen-year-old Katie, disappears, the school and the town fear the worst. And then Margot gets a “Dear Amy” letter unlike any of the ones she’s received before. It’s a desperate plea for rescue from a girl who says she is being held captive and in terrible danger—a girl called Bethan Avery, who was abducted from the local area twenty years ago…and never found.

The letter matches a sample of Bethan’s handwriting that the police have kept on file since she vanished, and this shocking development in an infamous cold case catches the attention of criminologist Martin Forrester, who has been trying to find out what happened to her all those years ago. Spurred on by her concern for both Katie and the mysterious Bethan, Margot sets out—with Martin’s help—to discover if the two cases are connected.

But then Margot herself becomes a target.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062433923
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 10/18/2016
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 1,123,722
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Helen Callaghan was born in California to British parents, and her early years were spent in both the United States and United Kingdom. She was a fiction specialist and buyer for Athena Bookshop, Dillons, and Waterstones for eight years. She read archaeology at Cambridge University, a subject she is still passionate about, and works in IT.

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Dear Amy 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Twists and turns throughout. Great unexpected ending...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An+engaging+read.+While+it+was+easy+to+figure+out+early+on%2C+it+was+still+enjoyable+from+start+to+finish.+
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent story line!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Terrific story. Highly recommend!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book a lot. Great story even though I figured out the main mystery of the plot early on it didn't detract from the story at all. Will be interested to see what she does in her next book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Awesome twist. Enjoyed it very much.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book. Would recommend it to my frends.
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Twink More than 1 year ago
3.5 Dear Amy is the debut novel from Amy Callaghan. Margot teaches English at a private school in England. She also writes an advice column for the local newspaper. She feels like a bit of a fraud though, handing out advice as her own personal life is a bit of a mess. Then Katie, one of her students disappears. And shortly after a 'help me' note arrives for 'Dear Amy' at the newspaper office from girl named Bethan - who also disappeared - twenty years ago. Is someone playing a horrible joke? Or could the author of the letter really be Bethan? Could she still be alive? Then another letter arrives and Margot finds herself involved in the investigation. Great premise! Dear Amy is told in first person from Margot's point of view. But as the book progresses, I began to have my doubts about Margot's outlook. Yes, Callaghan employed one of my favourite plot devices - the unreliable narrator. Margot is mercurial - hard to pin down and somewhat difficult to like. But that's okay with me - I don't necessarily need to like every character in a novel to enjoy the book. The perpetrator of the crimes is also given a voice - and their thoughts are distinctly chilling. As the pages turned, I began to think I had things figured out. Turns out I did, but kept turning as I wanted to see how the story played out. The pacing did seem to slow down in the latter third of the book and I think the resolution could have been reached a bit quicker. And I'm not sure if the romantic subplot was even necessary (or for this reader, believable). Overall, I enjoyed Dear Amy. It was entertaining and I liked Callaghan's writing. A good debut novel and I look forward to the next book from Helen Callaghan.
Rosemary-Standeven More than 1 year ago
I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review I read this book so quickly, it was impossible to put down – during the UEFA football matches that I was supposed to be watching, at the pub, in front of the TV – everywhere. From the first “Dear Amy” letter to the end it was a whirlwind of action and suspense. There is a twist that you will never see coming – but it doesn’t end there! The heroine, Margot, comes across initially as a very capable, very sympathetic teacher and agony aunt, who is having to deal with an unbelievably egotistical and selfish ex-husband. She seems to be coping well – and then the letters appear along with the first cracks in her life. Her previous psychiatric history – hidden from all but those closest to her – starts to impact on her daily life as she becomes more and more obsessed with the missing teenage girls. The book actually starts, not with Margot, but with the teenager Katie, who is in a terrible – but amazingly well portrayed – strop with her mother and step-father, and preparing to run away. You can feel her stomping out the door in a fit of teenage pique, and you just know that it is not going to end well. All the characters are so well drawn, and so believable. Your heart bleeds for Margot and Katie, and likewise for Bethan and Angelique (are they even still alive?). You want to spit at the despicable Eddy, cheer for Martin Forester, and cringe in fear every time Alex/Chris appears on the page. There is nothing formulaic about this book. It is thrilling from start to finish, and expertly written. But don’t start it if you have anything important to get done – it won’t let you go!