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Free EPUB Download of What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan: The Gripping Story of a Missing Child and a Mother's Nightmare


What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan: A Gripping Psychological Thriller




If you are looking for a book that will keep you on the edge of your seat, look no further than What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan. This debut novel by the British author is a New York Times bestseller that has been praised by critics and readers alike for its skillful plot, complex characters, and realistic portrayal of a mother's worst nightmare.




gilly macmillan what she knew epub download



Introduction




What She Knew is a psychological thriller that revolves around the disappearance of an eight-year-old boy named Ben Finch. Ben goes missing while walking in a park with his mother, Rachel Jenner, on a Sunday afternoon. The police launch a massive search operation, but as hours turn into days, there is no trace of Ben. Rachel becomes desperate and distraught, while also facing public scrutiny and suspicion. The media frenzy intensifies as secrets and lies are exposed, and everyone who knew Ben becomes a potential suspect or witness. The story unfolds through multiple perspectives and timelines, revealing clues and twists that will keep you guessing until the very end.


The author of What She Knew is Gilly Macmillan, a former art historian and teacher who lives in Bristol, England. She has written six novels so far, all of them bestsellers in various countries. Her books have been translated into over 20 languages and have been optioned for film and TV adaptations. She is known for her masterful storytelling, vivid descriptions, and insightful exploration of human psychology and emotions.


What She Knew was published in 2015 and received rave reviews from critics and readers alike. It was nominated for several awards, including the Edgar Award, the CWA New Blood Dagger, and the Goodreads Choice Award. It was also selected as one of the best books of the year by various publications, such as The Guardian, The Washington Post, and Publishers Weekly. It has sold over a million copies worldwide and has been hailed as one of the most gripping, compelling, and unforgettable psychological thrillers of recent times.


Summary of the Plot




The story begins with Rachel Jenner, a recently divorced single mother, walking in a park with her son, Ben Finch, and their dog, Skittle. Ben asks if he can run ahead to the swing, and Rachel agrees, thinking he will be safe in the crowded park. However, when she reaches the swing, Ben is nowhere to be seen. She panics and calls out his name, but no one responds. She alerts the park staff and the police, who arrive quickly and start searching for Ben. They also question Rachel about her son, his appearance, his habits, his friends, and his father.


As the search for Ben continues, Rachel is taken to a hotel where she is assigned a family liaison officer named Jim Clemo. Jim tries to comfort and support Rachel, while also gathering information from her and updating her on the progress of the investigation. He tells her that they have found Ben's clothes and backpack near a river in the park, but there is no sign of him or his body. He also tells her that they have identified a man who was seen talking to Ben in the park, but he has not been located yet. He advises Rachel to cooperate with the media and appeal for Ben's safe return.


Rachel follows Jim's advice and makes a televised plea for Ben's kidnapper to let him go. She also posts on social media and creates a website for Ben. However, her public exposure backfires as she becomes the target of criticism and blame. The media portrays her as a negligent, unstable, and guilty mother who may have harmed or sold her son. The online trolls harass and threaten her with hateful messages and accusations. Even her family and friends start to doubt her innocence and honesty.


Meanwhile, the police investigation uncovers more secrets and lies that complicate the case. They discover that Rachel's ex-husband, John Finch, has remarried a younger woman named Katrina and has a baby daughter with her. They also discover that John had an affair with Rachel's sister, Nicky Jenner, before their divorce. They suspect that John or Nicky may have been involved in Ben's disappearance out of jealousy or revenge. They also learn that Ben had a troubled history at school, where he was bullied by some classmates and befriended by a mysterious girl named Kasia.


The story takes several twists and turns as new evidence and witnesses emerge, leading to different theories and suspects. The police follow various leads, such as a ransom note, a CCTV footage, a phone call, a DNA test, and a confession. However, none of them lead to Ben or his abductor. The story reaches its climax when Rachel receives an email from someone who claims to know where Ben is and asks her to meet him alone at night. Rachel decides to take the risk and goes to the meeting place, hoping to find her son alive.


The story ends with a shocking revelation that changes everything. The identity of Ben's kidnapper is finally revealed, along with his motive and method. The truth is more horrifying, heartbreaking, and unexpected than anyone could have imagined. The consequences are devastating for everyone involved, especially for Rachel and Ben.


Analysis of the Characters




The main characters in What She Knew are:


  • Rachel Jenner: She is the protagonist and narrator of the story. She is a 40-year-old freelance documentary producer who lives in Bristol with her son, Ben. She is divorced from John Finch, a successful lawyer who left her for another woman. She loves Ben more than anything in the world and blames herself for his disappearance. She suffers from anxiety, insomnia, depression, and guilt throughout the story. She also faces public scrutiny and suspicion as she tries to find her son.



- bullied by some classmates and befriended by a mysterious girl named Kasia. He has a strained relationship with his father, John, who rarely sees him and has a new family. He loves his mother, Rachel, and his dog, Skittle.


  • Jim Clemo: He is the detective inspector who is assigned to Ben's case. He is also a narrator of the story. He is a 35-year-old single man who lives alone in a flat in Bristol. He is dedicated, diligent, and compassionate in his work. He tries to help Rachel and find Ben as soon as possible. He also faces pressure and criticism from his superiors, colleagues, and the media. He suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after a previous case that went wrong.



  • John Finch: He is Rachel's ex-husband and Ben's father. He is a 42-year-old lawyer who works for a prestigious firm in London. He is wealthy, handsome, and charismatic. He left Rachel for Katrina, a younger woman who works as a personal trainer. He has a baby daughter with Katrina named Grace. He has a distant and tense relationship with Ben, whom he sees only once a month. He is angry and frustrated with Rachel for her involvement in Ben's disappearance.



  • Nicky Jenner: She is Rachel's younger sister and Ben's aunt. She is a 38-year-old journalist who works for a local newspaper in Bristol. She is single, independent, and adventurous. She had an affair with John before he divorced Rachel, but she claims that it was a mistake and that she loves her sister. She supports Rachel and helps her cope with the situation. She also investigates Ben's case on her own and tries to find clues and leads.



  • Kasia: She is Ben's friend from school. She is an 11-year-old girl who lives with her grandmother in a rundown apartment in Bristol. She is Polish, blonde, and blue-eyed. She is shy, quiet, and mysterious. She has a crush on Ben and writes him letters and poems. She knows something about Ben's disappearance but she is afraid to tell anyone.



Themes and Messages




Some of the main themes and messages of What She Knew are:


  • The impact of media and social media on crime and justice: The book shows how the media and social media can influence public opinion and perception of crime and justice. The media can sensationalize, distort, or manipulate the facts and evidence of a case to create drama and controversy. The social media can spread rumors, misinformation, or hate speech that can harm or endanger the victims or the suspects of a crime. The book also shows how the media and social media can be used for good purposes, such as raising awareness, mobilizing support, or sharing information.



  • The complexity of human psychology and emotions: The book explores the psychological and emotional aspects of a parent's worst nightmare: losing a child. The book portrays the different reactions and coping mechanisms of Rachel, John, Nicky, Jim, and other characters who are affected by Ben's disappearance. The book also delves into the motives and mindsets of the kidnapper and the other suspects or witnesses of the crime. The book reveals how people can act irrationally, impulsively, or violently under extreme stress or trauma.



  • The importance of trust and honesty in relationships: The book examines the role of trust and honesty in various relationships: between parents and children, between siblings, between spouses or partners, between friends, between colleagues, between strangers. The book shows how trust and honesty can be broken or betrayed by secrets and lies that can have serious consequences. The book also shows how trust and honesty can be restored or maintained by communication and cooperation that can lead to resolution or reconciliation.



Writing Style and Techniques




The author uses various writing style and techniques to create suspense and tension in What She Knew. Some of them are:


  • Multiple perspectives and timelines: The author uses two main narrators: Rachel Jenner and Jim Clemo. Rachel tells her story in the first person present tense, while Jim tells his story in the third person past tense. The author also uses other sources of narration, such as blog posts, newspaper articles, transcripts of interviews or interrogations, and letters or emails. The author switches between different perspectives and timelines, creating a contrast and a connection between them. The author also uses this technique to reveal information and clues gradually, creating mystery and suspense.



  • Language and structure: The author uses simple, clear, and direct language to convey the emotions and thoughts of the characters. The author also uses short sentences, paragraphs, and chapters to create a fast-paced and engaging narrative. The author also uses rhetorical questions, exclamations, repetitions, and italics to emphasize the urgency and intensity of the situation. The author also uses cliffhangers, foreshadowing, flashbacks, and red herrings to create twists and turns in the plot.



  • Literary devices and techniques: The author employs various literary devices and techniques to enhance the quality and impact of the story. Some of them are: symbolism, imagery, metaphor, simile, personification, irony, sarcasm, allusion, analogy, hyperbole, etc. For example, the author uses the park as a symbol of innocence and danger, the river as a symbol of life and death, the dog as a symbol of loyalty and protection, etc. The author also uses imagery to create vivid descriptions of the settings and the characters. For example, the author describes Rachel as "a pale ghost of herself", Ben as "a bright star in a dark sky", Jim as "a weary soldier", etc.



Conclusion




What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan is a gripping, compelling, and unforgettable psychological thriller that will keep you hooked from the first page to the last. It is a book that will make you think, feel, and wonder about the nature of crime and justice, human psychology and emotions, trust and honesty in relationships, media and social media influence on society, and the power of love and hope in the face of adversity. It is a book that will surprise, shock, and move you with its skillful plot, complex characters, realistic portrayal of a mother's worst nightmare, and shocking revelation of the truth.


Some of the strengths of the book are its original premise, intriguing mystery, relatable protagonist, detailed research, captivating writing style, and satisfying ending. Some of the weaknesses of the book are its slow start, confusing switches between perspectives and timelines, unrealistic behavior of some characters, predictable clues or twists, and moralizing tone.


- well-paced, and well-resolved. It is a book that will appeal to fans of The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, The Widow by Fiona Barton, and The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena. It is a book that will not disappoint you and will stay with you long after you finish reading it.


FAQs




Here are some frequently asked questions about What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan and their answers:


Where can I download What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan in epub format for free?


  • There are several websites that offer free epub downloads of What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan, such as OceanofPDF, Rakuten Kobo, Archive.org, and Scribd. However, these websites may not be legal or safe to use, as they may violate the author's copyright or contain viruses or malware. The best way to download What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan in epub format for free is to borrow it from your local library or an online library service, such as OverDrive or Libby.



Is What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan based on a true story?


  • No, What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan is not based on a true story. It is a fictional story that was inspired by the author's own experience as a mother and her interest in psychology and crime. However, the author did research on real cases of missing children and their families, such as Madeleine McCann, James Bulger, and Daniel Morcombe. She also consulted with experts in police procedures, forensics, media relations, and child psychology to make her story more realistic and accurate.



Is What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan part of a series?


  • Yes, What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan is part of a series called the Jim Clemo series. It is the first book in the series, followed by Odd Child Out, I Know You Know, and The Long Weekend. The series features Jim Clemo as the main detective who investigates different cases of crime and mystery in Bristol. The series can be read in order or as standalone books.



How long is What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan?


  • What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan is 451 pages long. It has 54 chapters and an epilogue. It takes about 9 to 10 hours to read.



What are some similar books to What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan?


Some similar books to What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan are:


  • The Missing One by Lucy Atkins: A psychological thriller about a woman who discovers a dark secret about her mother's past after her death.



  • The Silent Sister by Diane Chamberlain: A psychological thriller about a woman who learns that her sister, who supposedly committed suicide when she was a teenager, is still alive and hiding from a terrible crime.



  • The Girl You Lost by Kathryn Croft: A psychological thriller about a woman who is contacted by a young girl who claims to be her daughter, who was kidnapped as a baby 18 years ago.



  • The Good Girl by Mary Kubica: A psychological thriller about a woman who is kidnapped by a stranger and held captive in a remote cabin for months.



  • The Child by Fiona Barton: A psychological thriller about a journalist who investigates the discovery of a baby's skeleton buried in a construction site.



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