Tuesday 21 March 2023

A Trace of Death

Finished March 18
A Trace of Death by Blake Pierce

This is the first novel in a series featuring Los Angeles police officer Keri Locke. Her backstory is an interesting one. She was a criminology professor when her 9-year-old daughter Evie was kidnapped in a violent daylight abduction in a park. This eventually resulted in the breakup of her marriage and the loss of her job due to self-destructive behaviour. 
The abduction was five years ago, but Keri still hopes to find her daughter. She now works in the Missing Persons unit as a detective and as the book opens, a teenage girl, Ashley, is abducted while walking home from school. Keri takes the call and goes to meet the mother even though her partner Ray thinks it might just be a case of a runaway. 
Keri's story is interspersed with Ashley's viewpoint from the situation she is in, so the reader knows some information beyond the investigators.
Keri's background story means that she is both dedicated to her work, as it is so closely related to her personal issues, but it also means that she has trouble separating her story from her cases. This means that she becomes emotionally entangled with the people she encounters, ignores orders from superior officers, and is often unprofessional in her handling of suspects and witnesses. 
I felt for Keri, but also found her behaviour to be a big red flag in terms of her job and responsibilities. 
This is a fast-moving novel with new information being introduced throughout. 

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