Little, Brown and Company | January 2018 | 304 pgs
Source: Library

This first book of The Searchers series tells a story of a missing girl and the introduction of FBI Special Agent Elsa Myers. 

Elsa was sitting by her terminally illed father's bedside when she received a call from her superior. Seventeen-year-old Ruby Haverstock has disappeared from Forest Hills, Queens, and no one understand why she turned off the security camera at a local café where she worked before her disappearance. She left work on time so the abduction might have happened after that. Elsa interviewed a few of her friends and it seemed no one really knew about her movement before her disappearance. Her ex-boyfriend, Charlie, seems suspicious to Elsa initially due to the fact that he deals with meds (drugs) and will offer or sell them to the girls he fancies but after a few more interviews with her family members, Elsa learned that Ruby has stolen a fake gun from her father and whether if she is acting out of defense or something, again no one knew. 

Together with Elsa's newly assigned partner, Alexei Cole, they began their investigation search and found a person of interest who may have been killing for years. While Elsa's mind is mostly filled with breaking the case and of her dying father, another part of her is tormented by her self-destructive past, her relationship with her sister and her late mother who used to be abusive and controlling when she was a girl. 

Elsa is both a flawed and an intriguing character, and while the story sounds promising, I've to admit I lost my interest halfway through the book and subsequently I plodded along because I hate to DNF a book and wanted to give it a chance. I think one reason is I couldn't connect with the characters, in particularly Elsa since this is a book about her. I felt there was too little of the suspense part and more on her interactions with Alexei and her past (probably this is the first book but well, I'd have liked it more if there is a balance between the police procedural and Elsa's tormented past); which is not a fault but more of a different expectation on my end since I'd anticipated something more considering Elsa was pursuing a missing person case. There are mixed reviews of this book on Goodreads so obviously it is a matter of one's expectation and view. 

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12 Responses
  1. Kay Says:

    Hmmm...I appreciate your thoughts on this one, Melody. And I do understand what you're saying regarding the main character. I have this one, but may wait a while for it. I guess we do have to consider that since it's an initial book in a series, the author is setting up the characters. However, if I begin and it doesn't work for me - it will be a DNF. I am having less and less of a problem doing that. LOL

  2. Jenny Says:

    That’s depressing. There’s nothing worse than forcing your way through a book.

  3. That is too bad about this one. I like strong character development, but not at the expense of the rest of the book, especially in a case like this. I hope your next read was much better!

  4. Lark Says:

    Sorry this one wasn't better. I probably would have DNF'd it because I just can't make myself read books I'm no longer enjoying. Life is too short.

  5. jenclair Says:

    Disappointing, but we all understand how a book doesn't work out as an interesting read. I've had several lately myself. The DNF pile grows easily if I have something immediately available that I want to read; I tend to plod on when I don't have a replacement.

  6. Melody Says:

    Kay - Yes, it's most probably the setting up of the characters. I think I was anticipating for more intense scenes than the character development at that point. I'll usually give the book a chance unless it's really bad and have no choice but to DNF it.

  7. Melody Says:

    Jenny - I suppose I was hoping there'd be a turn of direction reading the book. Sigh.

  8. Melody Says:

    Wendy - I appreciate strong character development in a book but sometimes having too much may have the opposite effect.

  9. Melody Says:

    Lark - I agree with you on that, Lark. I'm trying not to DNF a book unless necessarily. ;)

  10. Melody Says:

    Jenclair - This book was good for the character development, but plot wise it wasn't as intense as I'd anticipated. Hopefully the next book will be better.

  11. Iliana Says:

    Does this author have another series? Name sounds familiar. Bummer this one wasn't as good as you expected. I loved that cover and I do have a copy of this one so one of these days I'll get to it and we can share notes :)

  12. Melody Says:

    Iliana - I'm not sure, Iliana. But I understand Karen Ellis is a pseudonym of author Katia Lief. I'm curious of your take of this book and I hope you'll enjoy it more than I did. :)

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