Nine-year-old Frankie Appleton likes to count gates.
One day she hopes to design the perfect gate - a gate to keep the bad things out.
Little does she know that the bad things have already got in.
Now her mother is dead, and the only other person with a house key has disappeared.
Frankie thinks she knows who it is.
But first she has to prove it.
I was sent a proof of this book by Mirror Books in exchange for an honest review.
I had mixed feelings about this book, there were parts I loved and parts I didn't. Frankie Appleton was a very strong character in this book. She was so brave and so intelligent and really couldn't see how much better she deserved than to have Peggy as her mother. Lancaster did an amazing job portraying Frankie, every thought she had really drove home the fact that although she was very intelligent she still didn't understand everything that happens in the real world and as much as she wants to shes simply too young.
I got through this book fast, there was a note of suspense at the end of every chapter and I couldn't stop reading.
Lancaster uses two timelines in this book very well, were getting both Frankie's story and Peggy's at the same time. I find this way of writing is easily confusing but Lancaster did a great job.
I also loved the continued gate metaphor that is carried through the book. Frankie literally wants to live somewhere with a gate because then she can lock it and keep anything bad from entering, but it doesn't always work that way.
Peggy's story was a little hard to read at times, she had it hard and it was horrible. However I did get so fed up wit her towards the end. She had all these horrible things happen to her, and yet she still didn't try to give Frankie a better life. It was very difficult reading about how much she didn't care about her daughter and in honesty I ended up hating her character. Which isn't a critisicsm to the book, as she's a controversial character.
The ending of this book left me a little disappointed too, without giving away too many spoilers. There seemed to be too many unanswered questions which left me feeling a little deflated.
Overall a good book with an interesting and driven plot.