Gone Without a Trace: A Book Review

Between folding loads of laundry for the boys’ suitcases and helping them pack for a week of camp;
After weeding the bean plants and preparing a summer-day picnic;
While luxuriating in my lawn chair at the beach;
I have been carried this week on the narrative tide of Patricia Bradley’s Gone Without a Trace.  In this third book of the Logan Point Series, Patricia has created a cast of believable, multi-dimensional characters to interact with the beloved citizens who populate books one and two.  At the outset, we are introduced to Livy Reynolds who is devastated by events which are causing her career in law enforcement to spiral.  In the midst of sorting out her confusion, she meets Alex Jennings, Private Investigator.  He has been hired to locate a Texas senator’s missing granddaughter, last seen at her waitressing job in Logan Point.  Is it possible that this case is tied to the disappearance of Livy’s cousin, Robyn, also a waitress?

Patricia’s characters come with back story, character flaws, and enough baggage to stimulate the kind of theological pondering that comes with a journey on this fallen planet.  Why would a sovereign God allow tragedy to occur when He could prevent it?  Can a true believer be angry with God?  The darkness of generational dysfunction which has destroyed the villain’s life, and which shows up in measure in other characters (and in readers!) is gloriously offset by glimpses of grace:

  • a husband’s fidelity to his vows — even under challenging circumstances;
  • the imperturbable faith and prayer life of a godly grandmother;
  • a budding romance in which emotions are rightly subordinate to duty.

There are mind-bending secret identities being served up at Johnny B’s Truck Stop, and the tension of dangerous rescues and desperate escapes coupled with the creepy knowledge that there is an unidentified killer afoot kept me guessing for over twenty chapters and sustained the plot to its satisfying resolution.

This book was provided by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, in exchange for my review.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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