Earlier this year Gilly Macmillian got me out of my reading slump with her book What She Knew. If you read my review of it, you’ll know that I didn’t love it or hate it. But I did enjoy it enough to buy The Perfect Girl, another book by Gilly Macmillan. Odd Child Out happens to be the second book in Jim Clemo series. If she comes out with a third, I’ll buy that too!
Odd Child Out grabbed my attention from the very beginning. It helped that I already knew a lot of the characters on the police force. But it was also the new characters, who are refugees from Somalia. As a lifelong immigrant I love the topic of moving to a new place and creating a home there. So I was instantly drawn to the Mahad family.
“Best friends Noah Sandler and Abdi Mahad have always been inseparable. But when Noah is found floating unconscious in Bristol’s Feeder Canal, Abdi can’t–or won’t–tell anyone what happened.Goodreads
Just back from a mandatory leave following his last case, Detective Jim Clemo is now assigned to look into this unfortunate accident. But tragedy strikes and what looked like the simple case of a prank gone wrong soon ignites into a public battle. Noah is British. Abdi is a Somali refugee. And social tensions have been rising rapidly in Bristol. Against this background of fear and fury two families fight for their sons and for the truth. Neither of them know how far they will have to go, what demons they will have to face, what pain they will have to suffer.
Because the truth hurts.”
Better than What She Knew
Once again I disagree with the reviews on Goodreads. Surprise, surprise! The readers seemed to have preferred What She Knew to Odd Child Out, not that the ratings were significantly different. Both were unfairly low in my opinion.
Personally, I’d give this book a 4.5 start review if Goodreads allowed half star ratings. After being obsessed with it and devouring the first half in a day, I got a little bored. The middle part of the book just moved too slow and I found myself getting distracted by anything and everything. I’d come back, read a page, leave again to do something more exciting like pluck my eyebrows. Seriously, I got really uninterested for a bit there.
I hate to leave a book unread so I kept trying, and once I got to one of the twists my switch flipped again. The book had my attention again and I sped through the rest. I really loved the ending, so the slow middle only cost the book half a star. One thing I love about both Gilly Macmillan books is that they have satisfying endings. Most books have good endings, but these go a step beyond just good.
You can buy Odd Child Out by Gilly Macmillan on Amazon using this link.