Monday, May 09, 2016

Monday With Kaye: “Missing Pieces” by Heather Gudenkauf (Reviewed by Kaye George)

“Monday With Kaye” continues this week with a mystery/suspense novel by a NYT bestselling author.

“Missing Pieces” by Heather Gudenkauf

This is a novel of suspense and mystery within a family that may not be what it seems.

Sarah Quinlan has a stable life and a happy marriage in Larkspur Lake, Montana, with her husband and their daughters, who are off at college. She writes an advice column called Dear Astrid to keep her hand in journalism. They haven’t felt the need to even leave Montana for years.

Sarah accompanies her husband Jack home to Penny Gate, Minneapolis, to see his elderly Aunt Julia after she’s taken a fall and is in bad shape. He hasn’t been home for twenty years. Sarah welcomes the chance to finally meet the family Jack has told her so little of. She wants to learn more about his early childhood, his parents’ deaths, and what his relatives are like.

The family dynamics are uncomfortable from the start and she feels everyone is hiding something from her. Jack, she realizes, has been avoiding going home. Why? She’s missing information the rest of the Quinlans seem to know. Little by little, the missing pieces appear, but don’t seem to fit together. In fact, the more she learns, the more confused she is, until she doesn’t quite know who the man she married actually is, or what he’s done in the past. She doubts the little she thought she knew about Jack’s family—and him. Her journalist instincts take over and she puts herself on the trail of Jack’s story, whoever he is, until she realizes someone may be aiming for her. She must find out if she’s been living a lie and, if she has, who can she do about it?

Reviewed by Kaye George, Author of “Eine Kleine Murder, for Suspense Magazine

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