Jamie Brandt does what every harried parent thinks about doing all the time…she leaves her two young girls in the car while she runs into a store for a quick errand. The worst thing happens as she returns to the car and finds ten-year old Kylie and eight-year old Bailey have vanished. Denville, Pennsylvania is a small town where things like this don’t happen. The overwhelmed police department clearly doesn’t have the resources to find the girls quickly so the desperate family reaches out to Alice Vega, a sort of bounty hunter based in California with an excellent track record in finding missing people. Alice takes the assignment and quickly hones in on Max Caplan, a former detective with the police department who resigned in disgrace, to team up with her to find Kylie and Bailey.
I’m used to a story being really good in character development or plotting but it’s rare to see both done so well in one book. Typically, it negatively affects the pace or the story suffers from the length it takes to accomplish both. Not here as I emerged with a clear sense of the primary characters, especially Alice, Max and Jamie, and was enthralled by the fascinating turns taken throughout the story. Not too much predictability here and my suspects shifted often, as well as my suppositions about what was going on. Alice is an enigma and I definitely want to learn more about her history. My opinion of Jamie transformed slowly through the course of the story because the writer skillfully managed that. And Max brought a complexity and normalcy that balanced with Alice.
I enjoyed this story for all the reasons stated above and generally liked the listening experience. However, as talented as Tavia Gilbert is as a narrator, I think it asked a lot of her to manage so many diverse and distinctive characters. This was a clear example of where the use of multiple narrators would be advised. I still would recommend the audio version because she did well and it worked for me overall. This was an extremely interesting story with so many great elements that engaged me from beginning to the extraordinary end. I’m ready to jump right into the next book.
- Release Date: January 9, 2018
- Series: Alice Vega #1
- Narrator: Tavia Gilbert
- Audio Length: 12 hours, 3 minutes
- Publisher: Random House Audio