This was my first Chris Patchell novel but it won’t be my last. This story hooked me early and kept me captive the entire way through. Brooke Parker, the main victim, is more than just a prize to be won or lost. I felt I got to know her as a well-rounded character. She takes an active hand in her fate, even if it is just to keep herself alive one more day while being held captive. Brooke’s mom, Marissa, and her younger sister, Kelley, struggle to deal with her disappearance.
Those assisting the family to search for Brooke complete our list of potential heroes. There’s detective Seth Crawford whose got a haunted past of his own. Out of all the characters, he was my favorite. He’s got some big live choices in this novel all while under a ton of pressure to stop a serial killer. Then there’s also Evelyn Holt and her Holt Foundation. She sees the Foundation as a resource for people who have suffered from violent crime and she sees Marissa as a leader in that Foundation.
The one weakness to this novel is sometimes Marissa. I was OK with her being unsure of a lot of things in her life. She’s a 3X divorcee raising two kids on her own. Yet she knows for a certainty that Brooke would not take off without her travel insulin pack. She stands her ground, eventually convincing the police to open an investigation. However, later on in the story she gets a little sidelined with a romance. It felt a little forced and ill-timed. While I could see Marissa and this man getting together eventually, I felt that it was a bit too soon and the romance was forced to blossom too soon for drama’s sake.
There’s more than one bad guy in this novel so there’s a bit of clever misdirection as we and the good guys try to figure out who the serial killer is. The author had me guessing who was the greater culprit for the first third of the book. The wind up to discovering who was just as good as the chase towards the end of the novel. All told, I really enjoyed this murder mystery. 4.5/5 stars.
The Narration: Lisa Stathoplos and Corey Gagne both did a very good job narrating this book. The recording was excellent as the narrators sounded like they were in the same room. Stathoplos and Gagne both had distinct character voices and both had believable opposite sex character voices. The pacing was good as well. 5/5 stars.
I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Chris Patchell. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.