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DCI Anna Tate #1

In Safe Hands

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How far would you go to save the ones you love?The first book in a gripping new crime series featuring DCI Anna Tate.When nine children are snatched from a nursery school in South London, their distressed parents have no idea if they will ever see them again. The community in the surrounding area is in shock. How could this happen right under their noses? No one in the quiet suburban street saw anything – or at least that's what they're saying.But DCI Anna Tate knows that nothing is impossible, and she also knows that time is quickly running out. It’s unclear if the kidnappers are desperate for money or set on revenge, but the ransom is going up by £1million daily. And they know that one little boy in particular is fighting for his life.It’s one of the most disturbing cases DCI Anna Tate has ever worked on – not only because nine children are being held hostage, but because she’s pretty sure that someone close to them is lying…The first book in a gripping new crime series, perfect for fans of Angela Marsons’ Detective Kim Stone Series and LJ Ross’ DCI Ryan Mystery series.What others are saying about IN SAFE ‘What a page turner!’ Reader review‘If you’re looking for a book that will delight you whilst creeping you out, entertain while keeping you awake NEEDING to know what will happen, then you need this book.’ Reader review‘A very fast paced book … I raced through it in one sitting… I can't wait to see what Anna Tate does next!’ Reader review‘Full of suspense with a full cast of well developed characters, the story was engaging and original. Really looking forward to the next book in the series’ Reader review‘In Safe Hands, is hard hitting, gripping, suspenseful, chilling… A cat and mouse, race against the clock that felt like a whirlwind… it's such a corker of a read!’ Dash Fan Book Reviews‘A totally different book with a different premise to the norm… The story twists and turns and I will certainly be reading the next one in the series’ Reader review

368 pages, Paperback

First published January 24, 2019

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About the author

J.P. Carter

4 books81 followers
J. P. Carter is the pseudonym of a bestselling author who has also written sixteen books under the names Jaime and James Raven.

Before becoming a full-time writer he spent a career in journalism as a newspaper reporter and television producer. He was, for a number of years, director of a major UK news division and co-owned a TV production company. He now splits his time between homes in Hampshire and Spain with his wife.

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5 stars
1,043 (46%)
4 stars
837 (37%)
3 stars
259 (11%)
2 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 257 reviews
Profile Image for Dash fan .
1,467 reviews717 followers
January 31, 2019
4☆ Race against the Clock, Suspenseful Police Thriller.

In Safe Hands is a gritty suspenseful crime thriller.
A first in a new police procedural series featuring DCI Anna Tate. One I'm looking forward to reading more.

This book is literally every parents worst nightmare!
I worked in schools and the thought of this happening gives me Chills!
When 9 children are taken from a nursery school by armed kidnappers, no one knows why or if they will ever see their children alive and safe again.

DCI Tate and her team are in charge of finding the missing children before time runs out.

I really liked Tate, her character was likeable, strong, she had a personal connection to the case which will be revealed in the story, so she was determined to find the children safely.
I'm really looking forward to getting to know her more as I believe she is going to be a force to be reckoned with.

In Safe Hands, is hard hitting, gripping, suspenseful, chilling, and in some ways a lil too real as this scenario could happen. It doesn't bare thinking about!
But what Carter has done is create a suspenseful and thrilling crime thriller, a cat and mouse, race against the clock that felt like a whirlwind. You can't help flicking the pages to discover what happens next, preying the children are returned safe!
I loved the added storyline for Tate running alongside. It helped build up a connection and I really felt for her.
The police procedural was cleverly written and believable.

What I will say is it does end on a clifhanger! But don't let that put you off as it's such a corker of a read! With perfectly dark undertones.
I'm really looking forward to reading the next instalment!

So if you really enjoy compulsive, gritty, race against the clock, police crime thrillers, with a cast of multi-layred characters then you will love In Safe Hands

Thank you to Avon Books for this copy which I reviewed honestly and voluntarily.

My Review is also on my Blog Website :-

Profile Image for Louise Wilson.
2,907 reviews1,641 followers
December 21, 2018
Nine children are snatched from a nursery school in South London. Their parents have no idea whether they will see them alive ever again. No one seems to have seen anything. DCI Anna Tate know just how the parents are feeling. She also knows that time is not on her side. With one little boy that's sick, and the random demand in, will Anna and her team find the children safe and well?

This is the first book in a new series to feature DCI Anna Tate. She works for the Met. The story is narrated by Anna and Ruth's point of view. Ruth is the parent of one of the missing children. This works well as we learn how the police are proceeding and how the parents are trying to cope while waiting to hear if their child is safe and well. This is quite a gripping, well written, fast paced roller coaster of a read. The characters are well rounded and believable. You will probably guess right to who is behind the kidnapping, but that does not spoil the the story. There is a bit of a cliffhanger at the end, so I'm looking forward to getting the answer in the next book.

I would like to thank NetGalley, Avon Books UK and the author J. P. Carter for my ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Sue.
2,731 reviews225 followers
February 24, 2020
This is most definitely a 𝐒𝐮𝐬𝐩𝐞𝐧𝐬𝐞, 𝐓𝐡𝐫𝐢𝐥𝐥𝐞𝐫, and it’s the start of a brand new series.

We get introduced to DCI Anna Tate. Unlike a lot of police procedures I’ve read in the past they come with huge pasts. Drinking problem, hard, rugged, and some unbelievable.

Anna has a past that is current.
Her child was never found now she’s on a case where nine young children have been kidnapped.

I question if she was best placed for this job, but this is fiction and it needs to appeal. It certainly did that.

It’s a time running out “catch and mouse” tale which you fly through quite quickly.

I loved the writing, I loved how it was fast paced. I didn’t much like the ending, it seemed a bit far fetched in my humble opinion.

It’s a subject matter that’s been written about over and over, yet this ones on the whole comes in my recommendation for how well written and fast it was.
Profile Image for Mark.
1,208 reviews
January 22, 2019

This was a quick, easy and well written read
9 infants go to nursery in South London as usual one morning however there is nothing usual
about what happens next as while they are there the nursery is attacked by armed men who take the 9 hostage!!!!
Enter D.C.I Anna Tate, a good cop, no hidden agendas, no nasty side, shes not a secret drinker and.....she never goes running! 😃 however she has a past, a kind of a past thats current...her own daughter was kidnapped 10 years ago and never found...it seems she is the best yet possibly the worst person to be in charge of the case...
The story focuses on the parents and on the investigation and also has the side story of Anna’s unsolved mystery and really works everything together very well, from the parents reactions of finding out whats happened to their ongoing worry and frustration to Anna’s dogged professionalism to sort the case whilst trying to carry on looking into her own daughters disappearance everything is perfectly written and holds together well and keeps you 100% in the story
My only small criticism is the ending and whilst its not THAT far fetched it did raise an eyebrow but stranger things have happened at sea as they say and its not an ending that is 100% unbelievable
I am guessing every parent who has kids at nursery and reads this will be checking security at their chosen nursery as it is a harrowing story and one I imagine would make every parent shudder
I didn’t realise this was a new series when chose this book but will definitely look forward to Book 2 as Anna is great and her back story alone enough to make me want to read more to see what happens
A good thriller, slick and well done
Profile Image for 8stitches 9lives.
2,854 reviews1,644 followers
January 18, 2019
In Safe Hands is a gripping, well written and suspenseful read, and although I had correctly guessed the direction the book was heading very early on it still interested me enough to carry on. One of the main issues that make the story as predictable as it is, is the limited cast of suspects, so its easy to guess who the perpetrator is. It's certainly a rarity that an author can keep me reading despite the fact that I had solved the mystery long before it's eventually revealed, so kudos to Mr Carter for that.

I enjoyed that there was the main plot and then the side plot involving Anna with both being equally as compelling as each other. Anna's backstory is intriguing and helps you to understand her motivation as a character and getting behind her is easy. I found the cliffhanger conclusion rather annoying but it ensures you pick up the next instalment to see whether Anna can find her missing daughter. Anna is an intelligent investigator with a likeable personality and is believable and relatable; I admired her a lot. The difficult subject matter of child abduction is dealt with in a careful and compassionate way and is woven into the story creating an interesting plot with a dark, menacing undertone that you feel throughout.

This is a promising start to a new series which I hope continues to building on the recurring characters development and next time make sure the plot is a little less obvious. I'm truly excited to read the sequel as it's clear that Carter knows how to build up the tension; he has all the necessary ingredients to weave a superb police procedural. Recommended.

Many thanks to Avon for an ARC.
182 reviews10 followers
March 7, 2019
I thought this book was excellent. I was hooked throughout it and I was desperate to know what happened to the nine children. The book was split into two by the detective and one of the kidnapped children’s mum. There was some other plots going on which were also interesting. It was incredibly well written and I couldn’t put it down. Some of the story was heartbreaking especially with what the families went through. It’s every parents worst nightmare. I can’t wait to read the next Anna Tate book as I thought she was an excellent character and I really warmed to her. I would definitely recommend this book.
Profile Image for Sarah.
1,169 reviews138 followers
June 15, 2020
For my full review, visit me at https://mrsbrownsbooks.wordpress.com/...

It’s a parents worst nightmare: to hear their child has been kidnapped from nursery and there is a bounty on their heads. I felt myself grow cold as the scenario unfolded and wished that Anna Tate and her team would find the children and punish the perpetrators as quickly as possible.

For my full review, visit me at https://mrsbrownsbooks.wordpress.com/...
Profile Image for Mandy White (mandylovestoread).
2,143 reviews582 followers
December 30, 2018
In Safe Hands by JP Carter is the first book in what I hope will be a series following DCI Anna Tate. I loved this book and read it very quickly. I do read a lot of books like this one but the story in this one was different and not predictable at all. I also liked Anna's story - extremely frustrating ending on that cliff-hanger and will be looking out for the next book in this series.

It all starts with 9 children being abducted from a daycare centre in London - and nobody saw a thing. The staff are locked away and unable to stop the men from taking the kids. The parents are distraught and insist that the police pay the ransom to get their children back. But it is never that easy is it. As Anna and her team investigate they unearth quite a few secrets of the parents. But the shocking twist at the end I certainly did not see coming.

Thanks to Avon Books UK and Netgalley for my advanced copy of this book to read. All opinions are my own and are in no way biased.
1,141 reviews84 followers
June 27, 2020
This was a brilliant read!! It was exciting from beginning to end and although I thought I knew who was behind the kidnapping I was wrong quite a few times then it all became clear. I was a bit unsure about this book at first it’s the storyline being about kidnapping children from a nursery, a mum’s worst nightmare. But, it didn’t spoil it for me once I got into it. I would love to read more fro this author in the future.
Profile Image for Shalini (shaliniandbooks).
2,524 reviews208 followers
January 21, 2019
I am blocked for words hence only 3 come to mind

Gripping!! Compelling!! Unputdownable!!

I read this book with my heart in my mouth, the premise was so scary. A normal bright morning, routine day at the nursery in London till 3 men in guns kidnap 9 children... And that means pure darkness for their parents. One of the kids has cystic fibrosis and needs regular medicines to survive.

The police are called with DCI Anna Tate at the helm. And it is a race against time to save the kids. Anna too has a personal crisis happening in the midst which closely resembles the present one.

I didn't expect to enjoy this book by J. P. Carter as much as I did. I raced down the pages along with Anna, urging her to work faster. I liked how Carter's writing brought an intense urgency in me to know the truth. Anna and her team thoroughly investigated every lead they had. Anna's own search for her missing daughter was another mystery which piqued my interest.

Look, the story may give off this aura of previously read books, one might guess who was mastermind. But Carter's writing has this mysterious pied-piper kind of quality to it that I couldn't help but follow him down the alleys of the investigation. Cleverly using the theme of kidnapped children, 9 tiny tots at gunpoint from nursery, I found this quite a change from the usual tropes. Author J. P. Carter was a cool dude who knew which was the darkest and the most twisted lane to entice the readers till the very end.
I simply loved it. Read it between 12 to 3am
Profile Image for Rachel.
1,417 reviews151 followers
July 21, 2019
*thank you to Netgalley, Avon Books UK and the author for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*

4 stars.

Woah. What an amazing story this was! I'm definitely a fan of DCI Anna Tate and can't wait to read more about her. This story was so fast paced and grabbed my attention and ran with it. I was never able to work out who was involved or how I thought this story would pan out. 9 little children are kidnapped one morning from a nursery. There are so many points in the story made and leave you wondering how this is all going to turn out. I was not disappointed in anyway and think the author did a brilliant job. It was so well written that I didn't want it to end. I also can not think of anything that I didn't like about this. Sure there was a character or two I didn't like once I found out more about them but the writing style and actual storyline were great.

There is also a second story underneath the main, which is the fact that 10 years ago, DCI Anna Tate's daughter was kidnapped and never found. So while she's on the team heading up the investigation of trying to find these 9 missing kids, her past gets brought into the light. But that's all I can say.

I'm a big fan of missing/kidnapped children stories and this is one was such a compelling read. Highly recommended.
Profile Image for Gary.
2,674 reviews379 followers
January 12, 2019
JP Carter is the the pseudonym of a bestselling author who has also written sixteen books under the names Jaime and James Raven. This book was a strange one for me, I enjoyed the plot and the story did keep me gripped all the way through but it read like a debut novel rather than an experienced author. Some of the dialogue sounded false, forced and sometimes a little predictable but I admit I couldn't put the book down.
This book is the first in the series featuring DCI Anna Tate and has all the ingredients to be an interesting character with lots of strong back stories so hopefully the novels will improve, because they do have a lot going for them.
The book opens when nine children are taken from a nursery school in South London leaving their parents with an agonising wait to find out what will happen next. DCI Anna Tate needs to act fast, knowing that the kidnappers are desperate for money or set on revenge and the ransom is going up by £1 million daily. Adding to their concerns is that one boy his fighting for his life and needs medicine quickly.
I would like to thank Net Galley and Avon Books UK for supplying a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Paula Sealey.
515 reviews75 followers
January 5, 2019
An engrossing police procedural following DCI Anna Tate as she tries to find nine small children who are kidnapped from their nursery. It's a case close to Anna's heart as it's revealed that her own daughter was taken from her as a toddler. I loved Anna's character, strong and determined with an interesting back story. The overall investigation is convincing, and although I was sure about one of the kidnapping culprits early on, the author weaves enough into the plot to keep you doubting if you are indeed correct until the conclusion. There is a good cliffhanger ending too, which should lead nicely into the next book in the series.

*I received a copy of the book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Joanne Robertson.
1,363 reviews557 followers
February 10, 2019

It’s every parents worst nightmare wrapped up in a fictional thriller here when 9 very young children are abducted from a day nursery in South London. I mean, it’s hard enough being a working parent and feeling guilty for putting your child into daycare, but abduction is probably the last of the worries about leaving them in nursery! So straight away I knew that In Safe Hands would be a chilling insight into how the parents of these children would cope. Putting myself in their shoes I knew that there would be a mixture of guilt, anger and frustration shooting through their terrifying ordeal and it would be a tough read at times.

This is hopefully the first in a series following DCI Anna Tate and I really enjoyed my first introduction to her. She has an intriguing backstory that makes this case a difficult one for her to work on but it also means that she is the best person for the job. I think I enjoyed delving into her private life just as much as the criminal activity she is sent in to investigate and I found her empathy and understanding added an extra layer to her own personal tragedy as well.

I always enjoy a gritty police procedural and In Safe Hands was a definitely fast paced, engrossing read full of really interesting characters and with some great twists as well. Be warned though that the scenes involving the kidnappers were incredibly tense and also very difficult to read at times due to the very young ages of the children involved!

I loved Anna Tate and can’t wait to meet her again especially as we leave her on rather a cliffhanger ending! This is a well written book with a contemporary feel that I would definitely recommend to readers of crime thrillers. Here’s to book 2!!
3,019 reviews58 followers
November 9, 2018
I would like to thank Netgalley and Avon Books UK for an advance copy of In Safe Hands, the first novel in a projected series to feature DCI Anna Tate of The Met.

Anna’s usual day of overwork and under resource is interrupted by a kidnap. Three masked men have kidnapped nine children from a South London nursery but with no idea of motive Anna, as SIO, cannot afford to dismiss any possibility.

I thoroughly enjoyed In Safe Hands which is a fast paced thriller with several unexpected twists and turns. The novel is told from two main points of view, Anna and Ruth, one of the parents. This not my favourite approach but in this case it works extremely well, giving the reader a good insight into the impact of the kidnap on both the investigation and the parents who are left worrying and not knowing. The reader gets a real sense of the urgency of the investigation and the terror and helplessness of the parents. I like the way Anna and her team start with no idea and through dedication, hard work and technology begin to build up a picture of the perpetrators.

I was less convinced by Anna’s history which looks to become a running theme throughout the series. 10 years ago Anna’s ex husband kidnapped their two year old daughter, Chloe, never to be seen again and Anna is still searching for her. The developments that occur in the novel are bombshells but seem rather unlikely. Otherwise she is a smart, effective detective with a likeable personality.

In Safe Hands is a good read which I have no hesitation in recommending.
Profile Image for Chanel Lindsay.
549 reviews6 followers
January 15, 2021
An excellent start to this book series! This is very clearly going to be another series that I'm gonna love!
I have done plenty of work placements in nurseries, and the thought of this situation happening sickens me. I was honestly so shocked, tense and terrified reading this story, but at the same time, I couldn't stop reading. I found myself desperate to find out what was gonna happen next, making this a book a very gripping unputdownable read!
Now that I've finished, I feel like I can finally breathe.... a totally claustrophobic, suspenseful story that had me hooked from start to finish.
A must-read!
Can't wait to read the second book in the series!
Profile Image for Clair Sharpe.
538 reviews42 followers
February 11, 2019
This is the first in a new series of crime thrillers with the central character, DCI Anna Tate.
The premise of this is terrifying - one morning, nine very young children are snatched from the Peabody Nursery School in South London by masked gunmen, who lock up the staff and take the kids away on a minibus. DCI Tate is tasked with solving the kidnapping and getting the kids home to their very distressed parents. To make matters even worse, one of the children has cystic fibrosis and will become seriously ill very quickly without medication.
I flew through this book - the whole premise for the crime is terrifying especially as a mother (although not of nursery age children). On those nights I can't sleep I torture myself with things that might happen to my kids when I'm not there to protect them so the thought of kids being snatched from a nursery is really scary.
The book raised some controversial issues. The kidnappers ask for a ransom to be paid but while most people would definitely want it to be paid where possible, it also opens up the floodgates for similar crimes to be committed! It's quite an emotional book - the shock and horror the parents are feeling is very realistic.
The police procedure was done well and Anna Tate is a competent and realistic DCI. She also has her own backstory which runs parallel with the nursery kidnapping which leads us nicely into the next book in the series. At Your Door is due August 2019 and I will certainly be reading it.
For fans of Fiona Barton and Helen Fields.
Profile Image for Joanne Eglon.
140 reviews3 followers
April 21, 2023
4. 5 star Read ⭐

Not my usual genre but I enjoyed this fast paced thriller.

Well written.. Packed with suspense and believable characters In Safe Hands kept you guessing throughout..

I did work out one of the bad guys quite early on though 🙂..

First in a series I would definitely recommend you to give this one a try 💕
Profile Image for Neena.
Author 1 book57 followers
April 23, 2019
A clever plot and a touching story marred by flat writing...

DCI Anna Tate takes on the investigation after nine pre-schoolers are abducted in broad daylight from a nursery school in South London. The suspects are plenty, and DCI Tate has more than enough resources on hand. The only thing she’s short of is the time; it’s running out quickly. While entangled in a time-constraint, high profile case, Tate gets a tip about her daughter who was abducted a decade ago. It’s up to her now to sort out her priorities and decide which case needs her attention first. J. P. Carter is the pseudonym of a bestselling author who has also written sixteen books under the names Jaime and James Raven. Unfortunately, the quality of writing doesn’t justify the experience of Mr. Carter as it’s shallow and evokes no tender emotions in readers. The abduction of small children is a sensitive subject, and it can make the reading difficult for many readers. But the book is all hard facts and zero emotions. Carter barely scratches the surface when it comes to depicting emotions. The result: the characters are flat and fail to evoke any sympathy in readers’ minds. The plot is clever, but the final revelation fails to surprise. The ending is a cliff hanger, but with the first unpromising book in Anna Tate series, it’s highly unlikely that readers will be eager to know what lies in store for Anna’s daughter who is still missing at the end.
Profile Image for Geraldine.
527 reviews36 followers
June 23, 2020
A very badly written book that is also, infuriatingly, an absorbing read.

To be honest, this is exactly the sort of book that justifies the snobbism of literary genre snobs towards crime fiction. Nevertheless, it had a dramatic arc and a pacing that made me want to read on until the end, and, infuriatingly, I now want to find out what happens next to Anna Tate.

Main criticisms:
1. Cardboard cut out characters, no sense of conflict
2, Sort of plausible storyline but far too much explanation to give me confidence
3. Set in places I know but absolutely no sense of place
4. Lack of attention to detail eg police being addressed as Officer Robinson or Detective Tate, which is an Americanism I've never encountered in British crime fiction or true crime; WPC used as a term in 2019!; correctly, the Prime Minister is 'she' but the Met Commissioner is 'he', erm, no.
5. Nurseries in Inner London Boroughs being controlled by the 'county council' er, no.
6. A nursery having only 9 children (although in fairness it was the summer holiday season) and 4 staff, and none of the children under 3 or over 4!
7. Ordinary working class bloke formerly of a council estate and father of a minor gangster able to speak spontaneously in the syntax of a Gove or Rees-Mogg in interviews they've prepared for.
8. A great deal of telling not showing, which kind of exacerbated the cardboard characters in Point 1.

But easy to read, despite not exactly having prose to enjoy for its own sake
Profile Image for OutlawPoet.
1,300 reviews69 followers
October 29, 2018
This is an enjoyable book. It’s a good mix of procedural and thriller that definitely kept my attention!

Now, you will know who is responsible for all this pretty early on – it’s very well telegraphed – but that shouldn’t hamper your enjoyment of the book.

I found myself worrying about our little victims and very anxious for our main character with her personal tragedy.

This seems to be one in a series. While our main crime is neatly tied up with a bow, there’s definitely an open ending that had me wishing for the next book.

I’m definitely on board for this series!

*ARC Provided via Net Galley
Profile Image for Philomena Callan Cheekypee.
3,907 reviews397 followers
February 12, 2019
This is the first book in the DCI Anna Tate series.

Nine small children are kidnapped from their nursery. DCI Anna Tate is given the task of finding these kids before it’s too late.

Anna is a very likeable character. Her personal story runs alongside the main story.

This is a well written story with a good pace. Be warned if your a parent with little kids this story may give you the heebie-jeebies. I’m looking forward to reading more from this author in the future.
Profile Image for Helen Stead.
224 reviews2 followers
January 24, 2022
Loved this book, couldn't put it down and look forward to reading the next one in the series. No spoilers, but a very believable storyline.
Profile Image for Victoria Spicer-Stuart.
306 reviews4 followers
November 18, 2019
*Thanks to NetGalley and Avon for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review.* 'In Safe Hands' is the first novel in a new series based around British detective DCI Anna Tate and I am very keen to get my hands on the next book in the series. Anna is called in to investigate the terrifying kidnapping of a group of toddlers from a London nursery school. If this scenario was not shocking enough, Anna's only child was kidnapped a decade ago by her ex-husband. The police are racing against the clock to recover the nine children and return them home to their families. At the same time, Anna is fighting to discover the truth of what happened to her own child, all those years ago. An intriguing, fast-paced read.
Profile Image for Dawn.
1,022 reviews15 followers
January 24, 2019
DCI Anna Tate works within the Met’s MIT section when she is called to an armed kidnapping at a nursery. 9 children have been kidnapped and their lives are at risk can she solve the case when there are so many obstructions?

I bloody loved this book! I like police procedure and there was something different about this which would translate to the tv screen perfectly. Thank you to netgalley and the publishers for this arc in exchange for my honest review.
Profile Image for Kathy.
1,714 reviews23 followers
January 24, 2019
In Safe Hands by J.P. Carter is a very good read!!

Nine toddlers are dropped off at a nursery in South London just like any other day; however, this day is different - this day, the unthinkable happens when the children are kidnapped from the school after intruders posing as policemen lock the staff up.

The story takes place over four days and is told in the voices of two women involved in the case: Anna Tate, DCI in charge of the case, and Ruth Brady, mother of Liam, one of the kidnapped children. (Liam has cystic fibrosis and is at special risk if he doesn't receive his medication regularly.)

Anna can personally relate to how the parents of the kidnapped children are feeling. Her ex-husband, Matt, took their two-year old daughter Chloe and disappeared ten years ago; she's never gotten over it and has never stopped searching for them. With seventeen years of service with the MET under her belt, she is an extremely capable (and likeable) investigator. She will need all the experience she has to solve this case - the kidnappers are demanding $6 million pounds for the safe return of the children. If their deadline isn't met, the ransom increases by $1 million pounds each day, and one of the children will be killed each day the deadline is overdue. Talk about PRESSURE with a capital 'P'!!

At the beginning, it is hard to imagine that anyone could do this, but as Anna discovers, there are several people with ample motives. It is fascinating watching her uncover information and put the pieces together.

J.P. Carter does a fine job of hooking the reader with a story-line that anyone with a beating heart can relate to - children in danger. He then keeps us glued to the pages by ending each chapter with a small cliffhanger. The characters are very well drawn and fully fleshed out - each one is believable, and he does a great job of describing the emotional toll this situation is taking on all involved.

Sign me up! I'm already waiting for the next book in this promising series!!

Many thanks to NetGalley and Avon for allowing me to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Sarah Waldron.
351 reviews
January 3, 2019
Nine toddlers are snatched from a nursery in South London and not many people hold hope that they will be seen again. Nine sets of parents are devastated, distressed and panicked regarding the safety of their children and are pleading with police to do everything that they can to bring them back home safely. DCI Anna Tate is leading the investigation and knows that all criminals make mistakes, there has to be something out there to give them the lead they so desperately need. As the kidnappers start demanding ransom money before turning the children loose, time is rapidly running out and it is already clear that at least one child will be fighting for his life.

Wow. Just wow. I enjoyed every chapter, page, paragraph, word of this book. I was on edge the entire time and quite literally felt like I was living it as I was reading it. J.P. Carter has written pure magic here in that the book reads like you’re following the investigation in real time. I felt like I was watching a breaking news story on TV, following every update as it unfolded.

DCI Anna Tate is my new favourite fictional detective. I love the way she was written in way in which I thought of her as a bad ass and a vulnerable woman all at the same time.

The characters of the parents struck a chord with me big time. They all had completely natural, expected and understandable reactions to this unthinkable crime that had been inflicted upon them, yet they were all different. I empathised with the shock, the anger, the despair and with some of their moments of feeling nothing but numb.

What a book to kick off the year! I had already text my best friend less than half way through saying “YOU HAVE TO READ THIS BOOK!” August 2019 cannot come quick enough, I can’t wait to be reunited with DCI Anna Tate. I can only hope that this 5 star banger is a sign of many more good reads to follow in 2019!
Profile Image for Beccabeccabooks.
628 reviews10 followers
May 1, 2022
What's this? The start of yet another police procedural series?In Safe Hands is an absolute doozy!

It's seemingly a normal morning in a London nursery until there's a ring at the door. Before anyone could blink, four female staff members are taken hostage, and nine children are abducted. No-one in the community saw anything, and of course the parents are distressed.

One set of parents are understandably more worried than the others. Ethan and Ruth Brady's three year old son Liam has cystic fibrosis. Without medical attention, the child could die.

In the midst is DCI Anna Tate. She has the hard job leading the team to bring down these bad guys, and rescue the children. With a hefty ransom posted and three main suspects, Anna has only thirty six hours to solve this case. Whilst investigating, Anna also gains a strong lead regarding the disappearance of her own daughter, Chloe who was stolen by her father ten years ago.

There's some really gritty moments in this read- threatening notes left and footage of children in distress. There's also the claims that children will be harmed if the ransom isn't paid in time.

From the get go I suspected one of the characters. They are hiding in plain sight, and know more than they are letting on! My suspicions were 100 percent correct.

You've got to really feel for the victims. I couldn't imagine myself in this situation. I know it's fiction, but I imagine there will be some pretty serious cases of PTSD afterwards. Those children must've been so terrified during their ordeal.

Looking forward to reading more of this series! Especially when it's left with one massive cliffhanger!

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