Silva’s thriller introduces Meagan Maloney, a private investigator whose search for a missing person draws her into a deeper mystery than she ever imagined.
The first volume in a series of mysteries featuring the caffeine-addicted Bostonian Meagan, Silva’s debut unveils a character who is refreshingly different from the stereotypical private detective found in many crime novels. As she tracks down the missing person in her first major case, Meagan enlists the aid of her computer-whiz friend and neighbor, Doobie. While Doobie is clearly the man for the job when it comes to hacking into various systems in search of information, Meagan sometimes needs detailed explanations of things readers would expect to be second nature for someone her age, such as email. Regardless, it is precisely this ordinary girl–turned-detective persona that makes Meagan such a relatable, believable and interesting heroine. Without dwelling or giving too much away, the author drops hints about a dark moment in Meagan’s past that led to her chosen career path. It’s enough to explain Meagan’s apparent naïveté, although perhaps not enough to explain the impression that she doesn’t always seem to be the brightest bulb. Meagan stays true to character as she finds herself in increasingly difficult and dangerous situations. Rather than resorting to hidden talents like a surprise martial arts degree or MacGyver-esque skills, Meagan responds to danger as any normal person would, mistakes included. This consistency lends an air of credibility to an otherwise unlikely set of circumstances, and it fosters empathy for this grown-up, modern Nancy Drew. Silva sustains a solid mystery that manages to keep readers engaged throughout the many plot twists and turns.
A well-constructed story that lays a promising foundation for the rest of the series.