Elizabeth is missing is more than a book. It’s a story that makes you believe Maud is a real person as everything seems so natural when she narrates it. I definitely fell in love with this mostly because of its narrator and of course because of the idea. Maud is an 80 something years old woman who is dealing with dementia and maybe a bit of Alzheimer. She can’t remember things she did, things that just happen or what she is supposed to do next, but sure she doesn’t have any problems in recalling what happened 70 years ago. It’s fascinating how human brain works and that is what probably made Emma Healey write this book in the first place.
Sometimes you might get lost into details like Maud, who has to write small notes about everything, notes that turn out to be just a waste of paper at times, making her more confused. The whole story revolves around Maud’s life and her mission to find her friend Elizabeth, who according to Maud, is missing. But can Maud concerns be reliable since Maud goes to the shop and buys the same things every day and can’t remember if she’s eaten or not? Not to mention the difficulty she’s having in remembering the members of her family’s faces. In her attempts to find Elizabeth, Maud has flashbacks from her life before and after her sister’s (Sukey) disappearance. While Maud’s short time memory is weak, her long time is still going strong as she remembers all the details, what she was cooking or what she was listening to more than 70 years ago.
By the end of the book we’ll find out what happened to both Elizabeth and Sukey, whose stories are connected in a surprising way. We also learn that sometimes even the most unreliable person can discover surprising things.
Elizabeth is missing is a book that hooked me from the first pages. Must admit dementia and Alzheimer are some conditions I’m really interested in, but that is not the only reason. Maud makes you read the story and I find her one of the most interesting characters ever encountered. Being a debut book all my praises go to Mrs. Healey.
It gets a 5 out of 5 and I highly recommend it to everyone who is into unreliable narrators.