Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Vanished by Kendra Elliot

It's shaping up to be a bad day for Mason Callahan of the Oregon Police Major Crimes Unit.  One of his confidential informants has been found murdered.  Callahan had worked with her for years and had gotten closer than he usually did.  Then his phone lights up with calls from his ex-wife.  Her second husband's daughter, 11 year old Henley, has disappeared on the way to school, only a few days before Christmas.

Callahan goes to their house and things look bad.  Henley left for the bus stop a few doors down but never got that far.  The FBI has already been called in along with squads of local police.  Callahan calls his boss and takes some personal time in order to help the family.  He agrees to be their conduit to law enforcement and their press contact.  He moves into his ex-wive's home along with an FBI agent, Ava McLane, who is the FBI's family contact and support.  Callahan's son is there, home for Christmas from college.  The family also has two smaller children, who are sent to their grandparents house.

The hours go by and Henley is not found.  Then strange things start to happen to Callahan.  Evidence is found in the murdered informant's house that ties him to the crime scene.  His dog is missing.  It becomes clear that his son, Jake, was also targeted for kidnapping earlier but the attempt had failed.  Is someone after Mason?  Is it personal or just another way to torment the family?

Elliot has created a tense novel with several mysteries going on, all of which are satisfactorily tied together by the end of the book.  The two embedded detectives, McLane and Callahan, are attracted to each other and their growing desires add another dimension to the mystery.  Each has personal issues to work out and are leary of trusting others.  This book is part of a series and the first McLane/Callahan book.  It is recommended for mystery readers.

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