Little Sister
June 24, 2022

Book Review

Little Sister

reviewed by Cara DiCostanzo



“There is no place for secrets in sisterhood.”

― Erin Forbes, Fire & Ice: The Kindred Woods

Little Sister is the fourth novel in the DCI Sheens series. I would have liked a little background on the characters, but I don’t believe it is necessary to read the other books. It is the story of two sisters who just want to be heard. What Keely Lennox has to say will have detectives running circles for days, despite what she is telling them, loud and clear.

Detective Jonah Sheens is at a pub with his newborn daughter when a girl comes out of the woods, covered in blood and in a daze. Keely Lennox and her younger sister, Nina, have run away from their group home. 16-year-old Keely refuses to reveal the location of her sister until they actually listen to what she has to tell them. As she begins to tell her story, the police wonder who the actual victim is. 

There are several voices in Little Sister, including Detective Sheens, Keely, and Officer Juliette Hanson. Each character on its own is brilliant, but Keely is the real standout. Though it is never talked about at length, she seems to be on the spectrum with a chilling voice and a deeply disturbing story. Keely is cold, hard, and manipulative and determined to tell her story. She begins with telling the officers that there are three men responsible for ruining her life. While the detectives’ primary goal is to find Nina, believing it is her blood on Keely, she asks them to listen to the puzzle she is relating, because it has obvious clues and leads to Nina’s location. At first, the team doesn’t know how much of her story they believe, after looking at her record and realizing she has a history of lying and allegations against the two foster families she had been placed with including Jared Boula, in the house they have just run away from, Henry and Sally, former foster parents and Frank Pinder, the male in a previous home they were sent to. Little Sister is a twisted and dark tale with triggers of abuse, rape, and grooming told from the unreliable viewpoint of an emotionally fragile teenager, who has never found one person to believe her. 

Gytha Lodge has written a mesmerizing, well plotted thriller that is like a puzzle, requiring the reader to pay close attention to all the minute details, though the bigger twists blew me away. Especially one told in the last few pages of the book. But Hansel and Gretel had nothing on these detectives. Once they figured out what Keely was trying to tell them all along, they acted quickly to save both girls from an inevitable fate. Keep your seatbelt on; the plot will take you on so many twists and turns you will find yourself going back to the pages where Keely told her story to figure out the bits and pieces of what she is saying. Absolutely brilliant!

Little Sister is available at:


Police Procedural Features