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Beneath The Surface

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  1,789 ratings  ·  136 reviews
I don't know where you are...

I don't know what I've done...

Teenager Abigail Ryder is devastated when she gets home from school to find her family gone. Nothing makes sense. Things are missing from the house and her stepsisters' room is completely empty. But the police think she's trouble, and when grandmother Eleanor tells her to forget them all and move on, there's no cho
Paperback, 352 pages
Published March 24th 2016 by Red Door
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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 ·  1,789 ratings  ·  136 reviews

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BENEATH THE SURFACE is the debut mystery/drama/ thriller novel by Heidi Perks. This brilliant novel focuses on the secrets, lies and the complicated relationship between mothers and daughters. drama, dysfunctional families and their effects on. It’s a story of family, betrayal, secrets and manipulation.

Her books include:
1)Beneath The Surface (Published Mar 24, 2016) Debut Novel
2)Her One Mistake -Canadian version-Now You See Her (To be Published Feb 5, 2019) originally published January 8th 2019
Jan 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: weepies

I am a Mom of two adult children. Any mother would find it hard to choose which child to take and which to leave behind, let alone if there were more than two.

Why would a Mom abandon one child and take her other two? Leaving a child in despair?

You are sixteen and you arrive home. Only to find emptiness. Your Mother is gone and your siblings.
Imagine the effect it would have on you.
Abbi's therapist suggest she writes letters to come to terms with her feelings. Write them down and see how she feel
Jul 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another outstanding stand alone novel by author Heidi Perks.

On recently discovering how much I enjoy the writing of Heidi Perks I have since read all four of her novels and looking forward to her next one. 

This is a novel of secrets and lies and makes fascinating reading. Very good characters and so well written. A book full of emotions and an intriguing novel.

Abigail Ryder is devastated when she gets home from school to find her family gone. The teenager finds things are missing from the house
Kate~Bibliophile Book Club
Jan 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
In the interest of honesty, I started this book last Sunday week, and up until yesterday I had only read 30-odd percent of it! Fellow bloggers had said they were hooked immediately but that didn’t happen for me at the beginning of Beneath The Surface. However, once I picked it up last night, I couldn’t put it down as I had gotten into it so completely.
Heidi Perks has written an excellent novel. It has a very intriguing premise, which sets the main characters and the reader on a quest for answers
Jan 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
Having just finished this book, all I can say is wow!

Beneath The Surface is one of those stories that gently draws you into it and then all of a sudden before you know it you are so caught up with the characters that it is impossible to put the book down. I actually read this in one sitting as I had to know why a mother would take two children and suddenly disappear leaving one child behind.

It is hard to actually say much about the story itself as I fear I will give parts away and wouldn't want
Mar 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
Abigail is 16 years old and comes home to find her mother and two younger sisters have disappeared. no sign of any life in the house. How could a mother just pack up and abandon her child, take her two other daughters and just leave one behind to fend on her own. This seems unbelievable and unimaginable, here begins the story and what a story it is. Family secrets can have a way of causing mass destruction and this is definitely the case here. A decision made will have devastating effects on thi ...more
Trish at Between My Lines
This review was originally posted on [Between My Lines]

Books about secrets! I can’t resist them. So when I read the synopsis for this one and saw it was about a family that disappeared out of Abigail’s life, I was so curious and I had to see just what happened.

First Line of Beneath the Surface by Heidi Perks:

“Abigail didn’t know how she should answer the policeman’s question.”

My Thoughts on Beneath the Surface by Heidi Perks:

I’m always a bit fascinated by missing person cases as a
Jan 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Originally reviewed on Becca's Books.

Wow. What a ride. Sumptuously told, delivered in the most enthralling of ways, Beneath The Surface by Heidi Perks absolutely blew me away. Hooked from page one, it was impossible for me to put this novel down, and in all honesty I didn't want to, and couldn't have even if I had wanted to. The mystery and secrets teased and taunted me towards the moment of reveal and, throughout the pages I became entranced by the story being told to me. Focusing on drama, rel
C.L. Taylor
Why would a mother abandon one of her children? Beneath the Surface is an intriguing novel about secrets, lies and the complicated relationship between mothers and daughters, with a dark mystery at its heart.
Mar 03, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaways
Beneath the Surface was an interesting read however, I am still unsure as to whether I enjoyed it.

The tale is told from three perspectives: the mother (Kathryn), her twin daughters (Lauren and Hannah) along with her eldest daughter (Abi) and, I suppose what annoyed me the most was the use of Kathryn's name by her daughters and the use of Eleanor's name rather than mum or grandmother as, this limited the books authenticity. I understand it was done to reduce confusion but honestly I wasn't a fan.
The Book Review Café
Jul 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Every now in then a novel comes along and takes my breath away, and Beneath The Surface fits the Bill perfectly. It’s an emotionally charged thriller that kept me enthralled until the last page. It’s a story of Family, betrayal, secrets and manipulation.

Beneath The Surface opens with a hell of a tale, teenager Abigail Ryder arrives home from school one day to find her family gone. How could a mother leave her child? Or worse take two daughters with her and leave one behind? These were questions
Celeste Ní raois
Thanks to the author Heidi Perks, I received an ARC of this title in exchange for an honest review.........

I don't know where you are.....I don't know what I've done.....

Fourteen year old Abigail Ryder arrives home from school one afternoon to find that her mother & twin baby stepsisters are gone, things are missing from the house and the babies room is completely empty but none of this makes sense to Abigail. She contacts the police and as she's been interviewed they think that she's a troublem
Jan 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
Beneath The Surface was brilliant! It was completely unpredictable from beginning to end and I love how Heidi managed to write a story that feels very different and fresh from a lot of other novels out there at the moment. It was thrilling but in a whole new way and was laced with mystery and enigma that had me glued to the pages.
Beneath The Surface tells the story of Abi who gets home from school one day to find her family have gone and left her behind; where are they?! Why didn't they take Ab
Feb 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
My blog:

Sometimes you find that rare book that has you hooked from the very first page - 'Beneath the Surface' does exactly that. It lures you in and just doesn't let you go. Perks really has an ability to get you on board from the very first chapter which is something of a rare occurrence.

The storyline is intense and never ending (in a good way!). The amount of twists and turns that Perks has managed to incorporate in to this story is incredible and I really am so
Tamara Clark
Jun 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I could not put this book down.

It was so beautifully written, yet it is such a tragic, heartbreaking story.

The ending broke my heart but it fit perfectly.

I will definitely read more of the authors books. She writes beautifully.
Jan 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
*Actual rating: 4.5/5*

Beneath The Surface plays its cards incredibly close to its chest as it poses disastrous dilemmas for one family under the microscope.

Step into the shoes of a seventeen year old girl with a whole lot to say for herself, who left the house one morning only to return to an empty one. Her mother and her two year old sisters weren’t home, and as time went on it appeared they had no intention of ever coming back.

Unfortunately, this stuff of nightmares happened to Abigail. At fir
Rachel Gilbey
Mar 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
What sort of mother could possibly disappear one day, taking her twin toddler daughters with her, but leaving behind her teenager? What sort of grandmother tells the teenager to forget about her family and just to move on with life? And how does the teenager ever rebuild her life. 14 years later everything for this family is about to unravel and its a fascinating journey to discover the truth behind that day.

Well that is what happened to Abigail and the chapters focusing on her story, are writt
Mar 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The book starts with a short introduction from 14 years ago in 2001 when 17 year old Abigail finds that her mum and 2 year old twin sisters have disappeared from their London home.

We then move forward to 2015 and introduce the rest of the main characters. The twins Hannah and Lauren, now aged 16 are living with mum Kathryn in Mull Bay, unaware of Abigail’s existance. Grandmother Eleanor is in a care home suffering from dementia.

Abigail’s husband Adam wants a baby, but Abigail is secretly still o
Jun 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
Beneath the Surface is a perfect title for this book. This is is a book that grabs you immediately, reels you in and doesn't let you go. It took twists and turns I never saw coming. How a parent and a grandparent could walk away and leave one child to fend for themselves at 15 years old I will never understand. Talk about skeletons in the closet! The characters were very well developed and their personalities painted so that I immediately liked or disliked them. For all the characters but especi ...more
Jill Fairbrother
Jan 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I feel bereft. After a week with my new friends Abigail, Hannah and Lauren, I had to say goodbye to them tonight. I'm sure that Abigail felt far worse when she came home and found her two year old sisters and mother were missing, but the characters were so brilliantly developed and their story so well told I feel I have been part of their lives too. I felt their pain, their confusion and understood the conflict and control they were dealing with.
Fantastically crafted story telling, that transpo
Apr 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
"Beneath the Surface" is a very clever psychological thriller, full of subtle twists and turns. It picks apart and explores the complex relationships between a mother and her daughters, with plenty of unexpected plot developments to keep the reader guessing until the end. I found myself changing my mind about the guilty party throughout - I wanted to dislike Kathryn and lay the blame at her door, but found myself coming to understand her more as the novel progressed. The secrets and lies are unc ...more
Alice Clark-platts
Mar 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Why would a mother ever leave a child behind?

Beneath the Surface is a gripping thriller that follows Abi in her quest to find the truth behind why her mother left her alone yet took her twin sisters with her. Heidi Perks is a fantastic writer and I read this book in one sitting. The novel is packed to the brim with secrets following Abi up to the present day when she may finally have a chance to confront the mother who abandoned her.

Georgina Gilbert
Mar 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is only the second book that I've read which falls under the 'mystery' category and I really don't know why I haven't started in this genre sooner! I think it can be tricky to find the perfect formula for a mystery novel, as the story needs to keep the reader wanting to discover more, without unnecessary taunting by withholding information whilst also ensuring that the story is believable.

From the first page of Beneath The Surface, I knew that this book was going to be a favourite of mine.
Jul 03, 2016 rated it liked it
I had heard so many great things about this book that I jumped at the chance to read it. I can see why people absolutely love it, but I’m afraid I didn’t so much. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great read and I did enjoy it. It was just missing something for me (when I work out what ‘something’ is I’ll let you know). I’m still umming and ahhing over my star rating, hopefully I can decide before I reach the end of this review!

Abigail, a sulky teenager, returns home one day after school to find her mo
Feb 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2016
Beneath the Surface by Heidi Perks has one of those blurbs that just make you need to read the book because you just have to know what happened, it poses so many questions that need answers. What kind of mother leaves a child behind? How did this affect Abi? Did it affect the twins growing up? What kind of grandmother tells you to forget your own family? My head was spinning with questions and the more I read of this book the more complex and utterly brilliant it becomes as the answers begin to ...more
Michelle Ryles
Mar 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: galleys-read
There was no hanging around in this book as we are transported back to 2001 and immediately plunged into the drama when Abigail returns home from school to an empty house. A house that is normally bubbling with the excitement and chatter of Abigail's two year old twin sisters, Hannah and Lauren. As Abigail makes her way through the house in search of her mother and sisters, she makes a startling discovery; the twins' room has been stripped bare and, apart from a stray teddy that seems to have be ...more
Mar 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
Imagine being sixteen and coming home from school to find that your mother and baby stepsisters have disappeared from the family home, leaving no trace of where they might have gone. Trying to make sense of this disappearance would be beyond the comprehension of most people and for Abigail Ryder the devastating truth of abandonment is something that will shadow her throughout the rest of her adolescence and early adulthood.

After the initial disappearance we meet up with Abigail some fourteen yea
Laura Broadberry
Mar 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
Beneath the Surface by Heidi Perks is an interesting read, filled with a sleuth of complex characters and unexpected plot twits. I thoroughly enjoyed reading the book, and was hooked from the first page.

Abigail, as a 17 year old, is left by her mother, who one day disappears with her two sisters while she’s still at school. Years later, Kathryn (her mother) is living in an isolated beach town with the two girls. Hannah (one of the two girls) begins to ask questions, whilst Abigail begins digging
Lorna Holland
Mar 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc
Full review now up on my blog:

The overarching themes of the book are love, loss, pride, and family values. Family is the key that holds the story together, so it's quite ironic when you read it and see just how dysfunctional our main characters are. Without giving too much away, the whole family pivots around one significant family member, who triggers a series of events leading the characters to where they end up.

I found the plot as a whole to be quite f
Heather Balog
Jan 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Seventeen year old Abi comes home from school one day and discovers her mother and two year old sisters are missing. They've apparently left without her and Abi, has no idea why. Fourteen years later, she still doesn't understand it. Over the course of the novel, through letters Abi writes to her husband, flashbacks from her mother Kathryn, and her now sixteen year old sister Hannah's current life, the reader starts to piece together what actually precipitated Abi being abandoned.
This was not ne
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Heidi Perks was born in 1973. She lives by the sea in Bournemouth with her husband and two children.
Heidi graduated from Bournemouth University in 1997 with a BA (Hons) in Retail Management, and then enjoyed a career in Marketing before leaving in 2012 to focus on both bringing up her family and writing.
Heidi successfully applied for a place on the inaugural Curtis Brown Creative online Novel Writ

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