Elizabeth Is Missing

Elizabeth Is Missing

Book - 2014
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In this darkly riveting debut novel--a sophisticated psychological mystery that is also an heartbreakingly honest meditation on memory, identity, and aging--an elderly woman descending into dementia embarks on a desperate quest to find the best friend she believes has disappeared, and her search for the truth will go back decades and have shattering consequences.

Maud, an aging grandmother, is slowly losing her memory--and her grip on everyday life. Yet she refuses to forget her best friend Elizabeth, whom she is convinced is missing and in terrible danger.

But no one will listen to Maud--not her frustrated daughter, Helen, not her caretakers, not the police, and especially not Elizabeth's mercurial son, Peter. Armed with handwritten notes she leaves for herself and an overwhelming feeling that Elizabeth needs her help, Maud resolves to discover the truth and save her beloved friend.

This singular obsession forms a cornerstone of Maud's rapidly dissolving present. But the clues she discovers seem only to lead her deeper into her past, to another unsolved disappearance: her sister, Sukey, who vanished shortly after World War II.

As vivid memories of a tragedy that occurred more fifty years ago come flooding back, Maud discovers new momentum in her search for her friend. Could the mystery of Sukey's disappearance hold the key to finding Elizabeth?

Publisher: New York :, Harper,, c2014
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780062309662
Branch Call Number: FIC Heal
Characteristics: 303 p


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Apr 19, 2017

This book has an intriguing premise. Maud, although suffering from dementia, uses her long term memory to solve a mystery from the past. One suspects that the author is basing the character of Maud on her own grandmother. However, the plot itself is implausible and the first person narrative - ranging from memory loss to complete clarity - also does not work.

Feb 07, 2017

I'm ambivalent about this. It had its moments but they were few and far between. Muddled like the poor woman with the dementia.

Nov 10, 2016

Way too long, extremely tedious, disappointed in the ending.

Oct 19, 2016

A story told from the perspective of the muddled mind of an older woman with dementia. A family mystery is slowly revealed by weaving around large holes in her memory. Maud's character is written with compassion and warmth. It will appeal to those who enjoy a character driven book.

Sep 18, 2016

I've never read anything like this. It's like an experience in someone else's mind. The repetition is part of the understanding and frustration. Read it for the creative approach, and for the writer's grip on writing. The outcome is not difficult to predict, but it's her journey traveled within her limitations. A revelation for those of us who have seen anothers' journey into dementia.

Jun 22, 2016

I liked the storyline so far, also the characters, the twist was also another thing

May 20, 2016

Yes she will be a good writer but the thriller part fall flat. Too complicated and even at the end I was not even sure who had done it! But Maud reflections are a vivid image of the evolution of dementia.

Mar 09, 2016

The author's insight into what someone with dementia is thinking has helped me with a new appreciation for my mother's struggle. with memory loss. Highly recommended!

Nov 17, 2015

Mystery, about a woman who suffers from memory loss and the mystery of the disappearance of her sister when she was a child. Very effective use of words to characterize a person suffering from memory loss by using fragmentary memories.

samdog123 Jul 05, 2015

For a first time author, Emma Healey absolutely nails this book--it's just wonderful. Eighty-two year old Maud, suffers from Alzheimer's disease. She has trouble coping with day-to-day life, but what's most puzzling is what happened to her friend, Elizabeth? As Maud tries desperately to figure this out, her mind travels back to her missing sister, who disappeared shortly after the end of WWII. Although its hard to get to know Maud due to all her confusion, you are left with a sense of a wonderful, caring person that she must have been.

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Jun 24, 2014

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Jul 07, 2014

When the main character is elderly and has some serious memory loss, it's hard to know which way the story leads -- and that's a good thing in this well-written page turner. Has something happened to Maud's friend, Elizabeth? Or, just as likely, did something happen to Maud's beloved sister, Sukey, 45 years ago?


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