The Child

  • by Fiona Barton
  • Narrated by Mandy Williams, Rosalyn Landor, Full Cast
  • 11 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The author of the stunning New York Times best seller The Widow returns with a brand-new novel of twisting psychological suspense.
As an old house is demolished in a gentrifying section of London, a workman discovers a tiny skeleton, buried for years. For journalist Kate Waters, it's a story that deserves attention. She cobbles together a piece for her newspaper, but at a loss for answers, she can only pose a question: Who is the Building Site Baby?
As Kate investigates, she unearths connections to a crime that rocked the city decades earlier: A newborn baby was stolen from the maternity ward in a local hospital and was never found. Her heartbroken parents were left devastated by the loss.
But there is more to the story, and Kate is drawn - house by house - into the pasts of the people who once lived in this neighborhood that has given up its greatest mystery. And she soon finds herself the keeper of unexpected secrets that erupt in the lives of three women - and torn between what she can and cannot tell.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Pacing Problems

Had this not been so highly recommended by a friend, I don't think I could have pushed on to finish this book because of the painstakingly slow progress and the straight recounting style the author, a former journalist herself, uses to tell this story. Usually, I appreciate a *show-don't-tell* type of read, feeling engaged in the process of fleshing out a novel. Too often Barton seemed to dawdle on the details in her procedural, until what were supposed to be interesting pieces of a puzzle felt like belabored points.

This is a book that is probably best as a companion for a couple of days, one to listen to a little while, set down at night, and pick up at your leisure. A good book for occupying time, because it's not a bad book, it's just not a book that holds you by the throat or one that is written with beautiful prose you might scribble down in a journal. Myself, by the end of what felt like a long slog, I felt too worn down to even care about the heart-rending journey I'd just listened to.

About the narration: Barton does very well including multiple points of view through her characters. The cast does a good job in most cases with their narration but I felt the total presentation lacked consistency. Some of the transitions between characters were confusing.
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- Mel


The storyline is very labored. Coupled with strange narration this made for a very boring audiobook experience. Not interesting enough to continue listening.
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- Jayne M

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-27-2017
  • Publisher: Penguin Audio