British novelist Tom Rob Smith is best known for his award-winning Child 44 series, but The Farm, his latest book, is certain to continue to the parade of acclaim and likely bring with it a bigger audience. The book, which grabs your attention very early on, focuses on Daniel, struggling in his career, still in the closet to his parents and slightly guilty for not having visited them since they retired to an old rural farm in his mother’s native Sweden a year earlier.
He receives a call out of the blue from his father, frantic, saying his mother is not well and has discharged herself from a hospital after being held for mental observation. The next call is from his mother saying she is on her way to see him to explain what is happening.
Daniel and the reader are quickly yanked into a psychological mystery surrounding a missing, abused girl a potential conspiracy involving politicians, wealthy landowners and his own father. Smith keeps the reader guessing until the very end and manages to take a genre that has become increasingly predictable over the years and gives it new life with a fantastic story and sympathetic characters. Child 44 has already been sold as a movie and if there is any justice, we will one day be seeing the story of The Farm acted out on screen as well. Suspenseful, original and wildly entertaining.