Reading Groups' praise for The Vanishing of Ruth: 'Loved the book - couldn't put it down!' 'Wonderful. Kept me guessing all the way through.' 'A most enjoyable read, with so many interesting characters and very good descriptions of the areas visited. The end was an interesting surprise. Thank you for a captivating read.' 'I love split-time storylines and this was perfect.' 'I thoroughly enjoyed this journey through time and distant lands without leaving the comfort of my armchair. The contrast between the Victorians, the hippies and the modern day was fascinating.' 'It would make a fabulous screenplay - the split stories, great characters, wonderful locations and a well-resolved murder mystery at its heart - and there was a lot enthusiasm in the room for the idea!'
1976: friends, Marcus and Ruth, go missing in Afghanistan during an overland bus trip to Kathmandu. A generation later, Ruth’s niece Amber, haunted by the disintegration of her family, determines to get at the truth of their disappearance. Was it murder, as her father suspected, or a suicide pact as the police believed?
Tracking down the trip’s bus driver, Cassidy, Amber starts to piece together a lost world - the mystical vibrant hippy trail to India – and colourful characters like Juliet, who imagined herself the reincarnation of an Edwardian traveller. As the mystery surrounding her aunt and the charismatic Marcus unfolds, Amber begins a journey of discovery of her own, that will lead her not only into the dark secrets of the past and lost love, but face to face with a tragedy much closer to home.
Interview with the author about her own overland adventure as an 18 year old that inspired the story
Discussion notes for reading groups