The Chain is a suspense thriller novels that follows Rachel and Kylie O’Neill being brought into the Chain. Rachel becomes a part of the Chain when her 13 year old daughter, Kylie, is kidnapped and she is given instructions on a ransom she must pay and how she must kidnap another child in order to be reunited with Kylie.
This thriller is truly a parents’ worst nightmare but shows us how far a parent will go to save their own child. It is a chilling story that will have you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. My only critique would be that I wished for a genuinely thrilling twist at the end where there was instead an extended action sequence. The conclusion to the novel became clear several chapters too early which didn’t stop me from enjoying the ending but did limit the suspense element of it. This is likely because the second part of the book includes chapters from the perspective of the leaders of the Chain, and whilst this is initially intriguing, I found that it gave away a bit too much too early on.
However, having said that, the horror of the events of this book really hit home through the depiction of Rachel. Rachel is a recent divorcee, primary carer of her daughter and recently finished chemotherapy for breast cancer. The development of Rachel’s character through the book exemplifies how a parent would feel if their child was taken and and the increasing willingness to do whatever it takes to get them back.
Another interesting character in this book is Pete. Pete is Kylie’s doting uncle and Rachel’s ex-brother in law, who Rachel calls upon to help her with the kidnapping and getting Kylie back. Pete is an ex-marine and, as we quickly find out, current heroin addict. He is a clear example a military man who was given opioids and then, after they were taken away, resorted to heroin to fill the void. Throughout the book, Pete is forced to deal with his addiction not only because of the trauma but also because he develops a relationship with Rachel, who discovers his addiction and refuses to have him around Kylie unless he gets help. My favourite part of his characterisation is that he is a loving uncle and partner who suffers with a drug problem, and we are never at any point expected to view him in a negative light. His is a thoroughly good character who has flaws.
Overall, this book is currently being raved about, and rightly so, as it is definitely a noteworthy thriller that everyone should read.