Select one of the keywords
The Vanishing Season: Ellery Hathaway    by Joanna Schaffhausen order for
Vanishing Season
by Joanna Schaffhausen
Order:  USA  Can
Minotaur, 2019 (2017)
Hardcover, Softcover, CD, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Ellery Hathaway was once the target of serial killer Francis Michael Coben - he raped, brutalized and murdered sixteen before her, but she got away. Not wanting that experience to define her forever, Ellery changed her identity and trained as a police officer.

As The Vanishing Season opens fourteen years after her escape, Ellie works in the quiet town of Woodbury, Massachusetts, and is having an affair with her superior, Sam Parker. She lives alone in a tiny farmhouse, aside from her basset hound, Bump, but texts at all hours with her friend Brady. She's obsessed with disappearances of three locals, whom she assumes are all dead. She sees a pattern. What she hasn't shared with authorities is that she's received a card in her mailbox every year on her birthday after someone went missing.

In desperation, because no-one believes that the missing have been murdered, Ellie contacts FBI Agent Reed Markham - the one who rescued her, and later wrote a book about it. Though he knows his superiors would disapprove, Reed heads to Woodbury. He does wonder if Ellie sent herself the cards, crazed by her ordeal as a teenager. The two try to find relationships between the supposed victims, but only discover that they crossed paths, unsurprising in a small town.

It's a gripping tale of two damaged investigators, who don't quite trust each other, struggling to get to the truth of the matter. There are big surprises for them along the way. The Vanishing Season is an exciting, engrossing read.

Note: Opinions expressed in reviews and articles on this site are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of BookLoons.

Find more Mystery books on our Shelves or in our book Reviews