A new author to me, picked up solely because I needed an author beginning with V for one of my 101 things in 1001 days challenge. As ever with a Kindle freebie I didn’t know what to expect from this. I was pleasantly surprised as this is a really well written, tight thriller that hooked me in very quickly.
John Simmons and his girlfriend Jennie Michaels are on their way to London for a trip to the theatre. They’ve not known each other very long but they are in love and John is about to propose. They stop off at a motorway services as John needs the loo, and he buys some coffee. When he gets back to the car Jennie has gone. Worse, when he contacts the police they threaten to charge him with wasting police time because the phone number he has for Jennie doesn’t exist. In fact, it seems Jennie herself doesn’t exist – she doesn’t live or work where she says she does, and no one seems to know her.
Fortunately for John a sympathetic police officer, Kate Nielsen, decides to look for Jennie. Despite all the evidence to the contrary, she believes Jennie exists and could be in trouble. The investigation would be so much easier if John didn’t keep getting involved though …
Running alongside the story of the missing girl, a vicious serial rapist and killer is on the prowl. Has Jennie become one of his victims?
The story progresses at a fast pace, but the author also manages to portray the characters in a very effective way, so you get a real feel for who they are and how they will react to situations. Strangely the character I felt was least well developed was John though – at times I found myself wondering about his life and what he did for a living, which was never really explained.
This is a real page turner with lots of twists and a few unpleasant moments. At times it felt a little unrealistic – John’s behaviour becomes more and more irrational as time goes by, but then again who knows how they would respond when the person they love has disappeared? I felt the ending was a bit rushed – the explanation seemed to be almost an afterthought – but overall this was a thrilling read and I’ll definitely look out for this author again.