In Brockwell Park, a residential neighbourhood in south London, a husband and wife are found tied up and imprisoned in their house. Badly dehydrated after suffering beatings and days without food or water, they are in bad shape with the husband clinging to life. But worse is to come. Their young son is missing. Young and driven, Detective Inspector Jack Caffery of AMIT is called in to investigate the abduction of the little boy. When the childs body is found Caffery knows from the nature of the attack that his considerable investigative skills will be sorely tried as he attempts to unravel the motive and sequence of events. Especially when he discovers that a tragedy in his own past is indirectly connected to the murder. As Jack digs deeper, and as he attempts to hold his own life together in the face of ever more disturbing revelations about both the past and the present, the real nightmares begin.


“There is no better example of a contemporary masterpiece than Mo Hayder’s The Treatment. Whether she’s exploring social issues such as homelessness and child abuse or just scaring the bejeezus out of you, Hayder spins a tale that feels like a razor slicing apart your soul. The plotting is extremely disciplined, the sort of structure to which all authors should aspire, and the story is a searing dark tale that makes you bolt up in bed during the middle of the night, wondering if that sound you heard was the cat, or Death dragging its sickle across the floor” Karin Slaughter picking Mo Hayder as her favourite summer reading on the Sunday Telegraph

Winner of WH Smith Thumping Good Read Award 2002

‘Hard to put down. The plot develops with satisfying unpredictability; the characters are compellingly drawn… [the] race to save a captured child has nail-biting intensity and the final twist a bravura savagery.’ The Telegraph

‘Books don’t get any harsher about the rotten core of humanity than Mo Hayder’s THE TREATMENT which is even bleaker than her stunning debut BIRDMAN. Hayder’s gory insights into the dark side are compelling. The finale is an extreme emotional catharsis, involving both redemption and terrible irony.’ The Guardian

‘It takes a writer of exceptional skill and intelligence to find a new way through familiar territory, but Mo Hayder can do it. The story twists like an angry mongoose, although Hayder never lets it flex out of control. But it isn’t just narrative ability that sets Hayder apart. Her depiction of forensic reporting…is clearly and grippingly authentic, and she shines a bright light on society’s darkest parts without any moral flinching. Everything is tempered with a rare sensitivity. Mo Hayder has been promoted to the premier league of crime writers.’ Waterstones Quarterly Review

‘Mercilessly realistic and depressing…exactly what the crime genre needs: a book that treats cruelty with a new moral seriousness’ Metro

‘Even darker and more tense (than Birdman)..who could have thought that Mo Hayder could travel even further into the darkest places of human evil? But she has and the results will leave you reeling!’ The Mystery & Thriller Club

‘One thing is certain- Mo Hayder can write. THE TREATMENT is a complicated, dark, intense, disturbing and compelling read.’ Deadly Pleasures

‘This sequel to Hayders 1999 debut Birdman is as raw as a predawn autopsy, and promises to please fans of her beleaguered protagonist DI Jack Caffrey and his weary crew of London cops and coroners. Hayder handles procedural detail, dialogue an volatile subject matter with powerful dexterity, crafting another deliciously chilling thriller. Forecast: This was a bestseller in England and should significantly build Hayder’s fan base in the U.S.’ Publishers Weekly

‘Without doubt she is our Thomas Harris: this is very violent, grotesque stuff which in no way suffers from second book syndrome. It has… excellent characterisation… ultra-gripping.’ The Bookseller

‘a first-class shocker which is horrifying, unforgettable and intense.’ Irish News

‘Gritty and tingling with tension, Hayder’s… novel contains gripping plot twists and is absolutely compelling.’ What’s On

‘Watching Jack’s psyche disintegrate and then reconstruct proves utterly fascinating in a most sinister way. The horrifying story… is brilliantly plotted, as mesmerising as watching a cobra coiled to strike. A complex, emotional, and thoroughly riveting read.’ Book List