The Search Party

A missing girl. Five friends. Who will make it home alive?

16-year-old Sadie Saunders is missing.

Five friends set out into the woods to find her.

But they’re not just friends…


You see, this was never a search party.

It’s a witch hunt.

And not everyone will make it home alive.


Praise for The Search Party

‘Skilful and compelling’ —  Observer, ‘Thrillers of the Month’

‘I’ve spent every free moment of the last few days feasting on The Search Party . . . A bloody good read and the very definition of unpredictable. Twisty, creepy, brilliantly paced and with a denouement I never saw coming.’ —  John Marrs

‘Heart-stopping . . . A thriller that grabs you by the throat and never lets go. Taut, compelling and occasionally terrifying.’ — Elly Griffiths

‘An atmospheric, twisting tale in which everyone has something to hide, The Search Party is a skilfully-woven mystery that oozes with tension.’ — TM Logan

‘Wonderfully crafted . . . What a read!’ — Stuart Turton

‘Beautifully written, and compellingly observed.’ — Cara Hunter

‘Tense, twisty and intricately plotted, with characters that stay with you long after you’ve read the last page.’ — Laura Marshall

‘Clever and atmospheric, with shades of Stand By Me. — Mark Edwards

‘A brilliantly tense tale of teenage frustration, lost souls and sibling love, with an atmosphere as tense as the end of summer storm that threatens throughout the book. Plus a whirlwind of an ending that’s like riding a rollercoaster.’ — Araminta Hall

The Search Party is a marvel: intricate, complex and utterly gripping.’ — Alex Lake

‘Psychologically compelling and deeply moving . . . Simon Lelic just gets better and better.’ — Dervla McTiernan

‘Simon Lelic is on my radar from this point forward. The Search Party is taut, beautifully written, and scary as hell, with more twists than a mountain road.’ — Christina Dalcher

‘A chillingly complex, well-crafted web. The voices cry out from Simon Lelic’s pages as if they are standing right next to you.’ — Jane Corry

‘Wow. It’s been a long time since I’ve read a book so quickly because I wanted to know how it ends. Masterful.’ — Michael Wood

‘Wow! I have been totally gripped by this riveting read for the past few days. The setting was perfect, atmospheric and chilling. The story, riveting and compelling. The characters, intriguing and suspenseful. Fantastic read!’ — Carla Kovach

‘Unpredictable, wildly original and with an ending that made me gasp, this is thriller writing at its very best.’ — Nuala Ellwood

‘I loved this book . . . Absorbing, creepy, and totally unputdownable.’ — Luca Veste

‘Brilliantly original . . . A compelling mystery that kept me hooked throughout.’ — Philippa East

‘Written with elan, The Search Party is full of high suspense and well-rounded characters. Lelic’s prose is straightforward and entertaining, while the surprise ending will make you gasp.’Bookreporter

‘This compelling view of the pressures teenagers face and the effects of bullying is given resonance by its various young voices, with a satisfying final twist.’Booklist

From the blogs:

‘A genius piece of writing.’ — Hayley’s Book Room

‘I loved everything about it. It made me feel alive. I couldn’t get enough of the characters . . . A truly chilling and complex novel!’ 5 out of 5 — Chocolate ‘n’ Waffles

‘I read this book in just two sittings, I just couldn’t put it down!!’ 9 out of 10 — Candy’s Bookcase

‘UNPUTDOWNABLE, TWISTY, and ADDICTIVE. I would also add riveting, compelling, and haunting. Full of twists and shocking surprises, The Search Party is one of the best crime books that I read this year.’Book After Book

‘This book is tense, intelligent and an all round cracker of a read. I loved it and cannot recommend it highly enough.’Linda’s Book Bag

‘A masterpiece of tension and a brilliant, frightening look into the core of human relationships.’The Nerd Daily

‘Excellent . . . The tension absolutely sizzles.’It Takes a Woman

‘I could not stop turning the pages! . . . A thrilling read.’Always Need More Books

‘What a story! . . . An amazing thriller that will keep the reader guessing.’ 5 out of 5 — The Reader’s Corner

‘Beautifully crafted and skilfully plotted, this is a first class, completely unpredictable story and one I highly recommend . . . Five sparkling stars.’Grace J Reviewerlady

‘An intricate, slow-burn mystery full of suspense . . . entertaining from start to finish. More Fleet please!’Damppebbles

‘An accomplished, polished psychological thriller with characters who are intricately created. Highly recommended.’ Random Things Through My Letterbox

‘Impossible to put down . . . a five star read.’Little Miss Book Lover 87

‘A compelling story with an ending that will take your breath away.’HandwrittenGirl

‘Fresh . . . captivating . . . an exciting and enjoyable thriller.’ — Tar Heel Reader