Mandasue Heller's thrilling new novel is set on the gritty streets of Manchester. We meet fifteen-year-old Skye, who's life has just been turned upside down when her mother finally does something so shocking that it can't be hushed up, the police have turned her over to the social workers. She doesn't know if her father is alive or dead; the woman who is supposed to be helping her dumps her in a terrifying 'home' that's more like a jail. But she still has one friend to turn to: the sympathetic girl she's met in an internet chat room, the one who seems to have a home life as unhappy as Skye's, Jade in turn offers her a safe place to stay but is it all as it seems or is there something more sinister awaiting her? Alone in Manchester, nearly penniless, Skye is willing to trust Jade. Even when it isn't Jade who turns up at the rendezvous, but a grown-up man who says he's Jade's brother and this is when her nightmare begins.
This book is absolutely brilliant, it had me gripped from the first few pages right through to the end, there were some great twists and turns too. I even had to slow down reading it as I didn't want it to end. The story does cover alot of subjects and situations which we're all too familiar with on a daily basis, from bullying, online grooming, violence to paedophilia, whether it's on the news or in the papers, this story was near enough to real life. It is a pretty gritty book and parts and I did squirm through so it's definitely not for the fainthearted. This is the first time that I've read a book by Mandasue Heller, I didn't just like it, I LOVED it and it definitely didn't disappoint. I would definitely recommend this book. I know that his book will stick in my memory longer than most because of the subject matter. I am really looking forward to Mandasue's next book already.
Afraid is available on Kindle & in all good bookshops in Hardback.