82. Vanishing Girls (Detective Josie Quinn Book 1) by Lisa Regan

I promised myself I was going to buy more stand alone books and not keep buying books that were the first in a series. It’s well established that I break all promises I make myself because I got this book knowing it would probably lead me into reading the entire series and yet the blurb sounded so good that I couldn’t not read it. In fact, at the time of writing this, I’ve already got the second book in the series lined up to read!

Synopsis (as taken from the Amazon Kindle Store) is as follows:

When Isabelle Coleman, a blonde, beautiful young girl goes missing, everyone from the small town of Denton joins the search. They can find no trace of the town’s darling, but Detective Josie Quinn finds another girl they didn’t even know was missing.

Mute and unresponsive, it’s clear this mysterious girl has been damaged beyond repair. All Josie can get from her is the name of a third girl and a flash of a neon tongue piercing that matches Isabelle’s.

The race is on to find Isabelle alive, and Josie fears there may be other girls in terrible danger. When the trail leads her to a cold case labelled a hoax by authorities, Josie begins to wonder is there anyone left she can trust?

Someone in this close-knit town is committing unspeakable crimes. Can Josie catch the killer before another victim loses their life?

Ability to read – I read this book over a couple of days during my lunch break at work. I found the story to be rather captivating and the direction that it took compelled me to read on. I didn’t have any difficulty when it came to reading this, I was already excited for the story based on the amazon synopsis, and found that the book didn’t disappoint my expectations. I could clearly understand what was happening to and around the characters and could picture the scenes without difficulty.

Characterisation – I felt I was reading enriched characters. Josie especially, was a strong and powerful leading lady whose past wasn’t glossed over. I responded to the raw mentions of her past and what had happened to her. I felt very strongly connected to Josie throughout the book and that connection helped me to understand the characters around her and let the story unfold naturally. The nature of this story made me think long and hard about the characters features but also encouraged me to speculate about the lives of people I know and the fact that you never really know what secrets people are hiding.

Visualisation – Lisa Regan gave me enough world building for me to be able to visualise what was happening, where it was happening and what the characters were doing. While reading, I felt that I was accurately picturing what was happening and my imagination filled in any blanks I had. The connection I felt to Josie definitely helped to paint a more vivid picture of what was happening and I got on so well with this book that I’m committed to read the others.

Uniqueness – Without giving too much away, I found this book unique in the turn it takes to finding the culprit. I haven’t read any books that takes this same turn – it may just be that I haven’t read too many detective books with this theme – but I felt that what I was reading hadn’t been done before and that I was reading something fresh and exciting. It’s a theme I have seen a lot in television programmes but not in written word and I was excited by how it played on and how the author set up the culprit. I didn’t guess who it was and even as the truth was revealed I was shocked that I hadn’t twigged it.

Star Rating – 5/5

Extra – There is a lot of room for character growth and it’ll be interesting to see how Josie moves forward and how much she lets her past effect her. As an introduction to a series, it did its job of hooking me and keeping me interested enough to read the other books. I hadn’t heard of Lisa Regan before finding this book on Kindle and am pleased that I did discover her and that I enjoyed the book so much.

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