“Missing”, by Dee Henderson
A Wyoming sheriff is called to Chicago when his elderly mother goes missing from her retirement community. Paired with a savvy Chicago cop, the two soon launch into a race against the clock when they realize something dark may lie at the heart of the disappearance.
“Shadowed”, by Dani Pettrey
Adventure, romance, and danger collide when a young Alaskan fisherman nets the body of a Russian open water swimming competitor. Another swimmer, who’d been the dead woman’s roommate years ago, is pulled into the search for answers as it grows more and more clear that something sinister is at play.
“Blackout”, by Lynette Eason
A young woman once implicated in a robbery gone wrong finds herself at risk years later when the real culprit is up for parole. The loot taken that night has never been found and he believes she knows where it’s hidden – only her memory of that night has always been unreliable. Can she remember enough to find her way to safety?
Three suspense stories in one book – a mystery lover’s dream! And the beauty of a novella collection is that it highlights the diversity of each author. With Dee Henderson, readers are treated with strong dialogue and detailed research of the inner workings of a police investigation. Dani Pettrey brought to life some really great characters that were very likeable. Lynette Eason had a fantastic story line that was very suspense driven – so much so that the reader felt like they had to watch their back as much as the characters!
In “Missing” the dialogue was greatly detailed and well-written, pulling the reader deep into the facts of the investigation and the step by step police procedures. But I felt it was a double-edged sword whereby it was a little too heavy on the facts and procedures, and not enough character development. I would have loved to read more about the characters’ thoughts, feelings, and emotions. The main characters, John and Sharon, were very strong, intriguing individuals (something that I really like about Dee’s stories – her characters are always strong, independent, and quite resourceful), and with a little bit more character depth, it really would have brought the story to life.
“Shadowed” had some great characters. From the mysterious Elliott, to the determined Libby, and strong Ben, these characters helped round out the storyline. The story itself could easily have been longer as the last few chapters felt a bit rushed. However, the plot was quite unique, and fans of Dani’s “Alaskan Courage” series will enjoy reading this “prequel”.
“Blackout” delivered non-stop action chapter after chapter. I also really enjoyed how the main characters’ relationship didn’t feel “rushed”, but followed a more natural timeline with the characters already knowing each other a few years at the start of the story. The mystery was good, and the flashback sequences that Macey experiences brought a unique and suspenseful element to the story – not to mention a bit of a tease as readers only find out a little bit at each time of what truly happened during that robbery!
Overall, Sins of the Past is a unique novella collection with three very different stories and writing styles. I look forward to more novels by all three of these talented writers.
Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.