Marnie Riches: The Lost Ones

Today I’m pleased to be taking part in the blog tour for The Lost Ones. My review is written with thanks to the team at Bookouture for inviting me on the blog tour and for my copy of the book.


The girl is sitting upright, her dark brown hair arranged over her shoulders and her blue, blue eyes staring into the distance. She looks almost peaceful. But her gaze is vacant, and her skin is cold…

When Detective Jackie Cooke is called to the murder scene, she is shocked by what she sees. Missing teenager Chloe Smedley has finally been found – her body left in a cold back yard, carefully posed with her bright blue eyes still open. Jackie lays a protective hand on the baby in her belly, and vows to find the brutal monster who stole Chloe’s future.

When Jackie breaks the news to Chloe’s heartbroken mother, she understands the woman’s cries only too well. Her own brother went missing as a child, the case never solved. Determined to get justice for Chloe and her family, Jackie sets to work, finding footage of the girl waving at someone the day she disappeared. Did Chloe know her killer?

But then a second body is found on the side of a busy motorway, lit up by passing cars. The only link with Chloe is the disturbing way the victim has been posed, and Jackie is convinced she is searching for a dangerous predator. Someone has been hunting missing and vulnerable people for decades, and only Jackie seems to see that they were never lost. They were taken.

Jackie’s boss refuses to believe a serial killer is on the loose and threatens to take her off the case. But then Jackie returns home to find a brightly coloured bracelet on her kitchen counter and her blood turns cold. It’s the same one her brother was wearing when he vanished. Could his disappearance be connected to the murders? Jackie will stop at nothing to catch her killer… unless he finds her first…

An absolutely gripping crime thriller that will keep you racing through the pages. Fans of Kendra Elliott, Rachel McLean and Val McDermid will love The Lost Ones.


I saw Marnie Riches speak as part of an online panel last year and when she described her books as “gritty Northern crime” I had a feeling they would be right up my alley. I was not disappointed! The Lost Ones has absolutely everything I need in a crime novel: a gutsy protagonist, a brilliant sense of place, a few grim murders and tension so fraught I only started breaking properly after I’d read the last word! 

Jackie Cooke is a detective I was really able to get behind. She’s determined, she doesn’t do as she’s told and she’s trying hard to balance her job with her family life. There are so many facets to her character and it was really interesting to unpack them and get to know her better. She has a brilliant partnership with Dave and I liked that she tried to bring Shazia into the fold too. I look forward to seeing more of them as the series continues. 

The Lost Ones is set in and around Manchester. It’s clearly an area the author knows well as there is so much detail, which really helps to set the scene. I was taken to Manchester and able to visualise everything and I loved it. 

I usually like to try and guess who the murderer is in books like this, but I had absolutely no idea! The first chapter begins from the perspective of the killer and this gave me an idea straight away as to how twisted they were. The methods are incredibly gruesome so it won’t be for the faint hearted but I absolutely loved the tension it created. I was on the edge of my seat the whole way through, although I did grip a little tighter towards the end as everything came to a head. 

I’m looking forward to the next book in the series already! 

The Lost Ones is available from Amazon.

You can follow the rest of the blog tour here:

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