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The Gone and the Forgotten - Clare Whitfield

The Gone and the Forgotten

By: Clare Whitfield

Paperback | 30 May 2023

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Part psychological thriller, part coming-of-age novel from the author of People of Abandoned Character.

An absent father.

A missing girl.

Buried family secrets.

Is the truth worth searching for?


Sixteen-year-old Prue has grown up around secrets. Her gran's stern silence, her mother's teary breakdowns, her aunt's whispered assurances. But now, in the aftermath of her mum's latest 'episode', Prue's decided she's old enough for the truth. She wants to know what it is that makes the adults around her turn tight-lipped and distracted. She wants to know why her mum can't cope. Most of all, she wants to know who her dad is.

Forced to spend the summer in the Shetlands with her aunt, Ruth, and new uncle, Archie, Prue arrives determined to find some answers. But she soon finds herself caught up in a web of family secrets, betrayals and perhaps even murder...

Set during one long summer in Shetland, this is a beautifully drawn, psychologically astute novel about a young woman's search for truth, even as she realises the lies that surround her have been keeping her safe.

About the Author

Clare Whitfield is a UK-based writer living in a suburb where the main cultural landmark is a home store/Starbucks combo. She is the wife of a tattoo artist, mother of a small benign dictator and relies on a black Labrador for emotional stability. She has been a dancer, copywriter, amateur fire breather, buyer and mediocre weight lifter. Her first novel, People of Abandoned Character, was a Goldsboro book of the month.
Industry Reviews
'What a beautiful, absorbing, emotional book. I was on that remote island with these characters, lost in their unfolding dramas and the barren landscape and long-past secrets. I was with young Prue on her quest to disperse the shadows of her past, and certainly identified with many of the things she had been through. A stunning read' Louise Beech

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