Aussie thrillers seem to have arrived, and this is a decent addition. 

Anyone who grew up in an Aussie country town and dreamed of getting out – at any cost – will have some sympathies for Rose Blakey.

She’s working at the local pub in tiny Colmstock with her best friend Mia, in despair because her latest application for a newspaper cadetship has been rejected again.

She has to find a story to make them finally pay attention. And then she notices something unusual: her little sister playing with a doll that looks uncannily like her.

She discovers there are more around town, each looking eerily like its new young owner.

Rose senses the beginnings of a story the newspaper might be interested in. She gives those creepy dolls a dark and dangerous undercurrent, and the paper loves it.

But as she pursues a follow-up, the stakes seem to be getting higher. There’s a mysterious new man in town, and her personal safety seems to be under threat.

The Melbourne author is making a name for herself in the local thriller/mystery market and Rose is a compellingly likeable but flawed heroine.

A better understanding of how journalism works would have helped.

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