THE EMPTY BED by Nina Sadowsky


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When a young woman goes missing in Hong Kong, a “fixer” named Catherine agrees to help find her.

Eva Lombard is miserable in London; she moved there with her husband and intended to focus on getting pregnant, but Peter works all the time at his investment firm, and she feels completely isolated. So when she notices someone following her, her anxiety leads her to pick a fight with Peter on their anniversary trip to Hong Kong. Angry, they go to bed separately, and when Peter wakes, Eva is gone. He contacts his affluent and connected employer, Forrest Holcomb, who in turn asks for help from his former lover Catherine, a shadowy figure who runs a witness relocation/rescue business on the darknet, helping move and protect victims of abuse as well as high-profile whistleblowers and their families. Catherine’s operatives head to Hong Kong to locate Eva, who is on the run with help from her own shadowy figures—an ex-boyfriend and a friend-turned–restaurant owner with ties to the triads, the network of gangsters who run Hong Kong. With the help of Catherine's operatives, Peter and Eva are reunited, but they remain a target for the unknown assailants. As Eva and Peter fight for their lives, Catherine investigates the man who was following them, because he looks awfully familiar…There’s a definite cinematic vibe to Sadowsky's (The Burial Society, 2018, etc.) novel, especially as the characters rush around Hong Kong in Jason Bourne–type chase scenes. Catherine and her mysterious network are impressively connected and intriguingly motivated, and the woman herself is a fascinating study of power, empathy, and efficiency. The short chapters push the action to breathless heights.

Surrender to the action and intrigue, leave logic by the wayside, and enjoy this whirlwind adventure in Hong Kong.

Pub Date: Jan. 28th, 2020
ISBN: 978-0-525-61987-1
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Ballantine
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 2019


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