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The Lost Daughter    by Lucretia Grindle order for
Lost Daughter
by Lucretia Grindle
Order:  USA  Can
Grand Central, 2015 (2015)
Softcover, Audio, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

I must admit I was a bit impatient with this novel because it seemed to be taking too long to develop the story. But once I realized the importance of the historical context (the kidnapping and assassination of Aldo Moro) and the need to fully develop the key characters and their motivations, I calmed down and let the author get on with it. The result was a very satisfying read and one I won't soon forget.

The narrative moves back and forth between 1965, 1978 and 2010 as this tale unfolds in Rome, Florence, and a few other Italian cities. Senior Detective Alessandro Pallioti and his young protégé, Enzo Saenz, are called in to investigate the disappearance of an American student who goes missing from her summer school program.

At first the assumption is that the teenager has run off with her Italian boyfriend, but then the police realize the boyfriend is old enough to be her father. That's not good! Next, the girl's stepmother disappears also. At that point we realize this woman has a very interesting Italian past and the story gets rather complicated.

With both the authorities and the stepmother searching for the missing girl (whose life may or may not be in jeopardy), we begin to realize that this is a situation that has its roots in the kidnapping and murder of Aldo Moro years before this drama began.

My advice is to obviously be patient, stay with this novel and let it develop. You'll be amply rewarded. It is nice to occasionally read a thriller that features real character development as well as a moving plot.

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