The troubled Nora Watts searches for the truth about her father’s supposed suicide in Kamal’s follow-up to The Lost Ones (2017).
Nora has a knack for finding missing people, but after a case involving her 16-year-old daughter, Bonnie, nearly killed her, she’s taken on something more low key: helping her former employer, Sebastian Crow, who is dying of cancer, write his memoirs while taking much needed comfort in her dog, Whisper. When a man approaches her claiming to have served with her father, Samuel, in Lebanon, Nora decides to leave Vancouver and head to Detroit , where her father, a survivor of the Sixties Scoop in Canada—during which children of Indigenous heritage were forcibly put up for adoption—grew up. In the process, she makes shocking discoveries about her Palestinian mother, Sabrina, who abruptly left Nora and her sister, Lorelei, when they were little. After she’s attacked in her hotel room, it’s obvious that there may be much more to her father’s death than she thought. Meanwhile, Nora’s old AA sponsor, ex-cop Jon Brazuca, is asked by his billionaire friend, Bernard Lam, to find out who the dealer was who supplied his pregnant mistress, Clementine, with the drugs that killed her. Brazuca’s search leads him to a dangerous gang that may have ties to the people who nearly killed Nora and Bonnie, and he discovers that Nora is in grave danger. Although not as bloody as the first book, this installment is no less compelling or gritty, and Nora, who remains as prickly and conflicted as ever, finds danger everywhere she goes. Kamal laces her narrative with a palpable melancholy, effectively capturing the urban decay of Detroit while emphasizing the vibrancy and hope of the people who inhabit it. An explosive finale, which takes place during Detroit’s yearly Angel’s Night, sets the stage for more to come from this complicated, flawed, and utterly enthralling heroine.
A stunning, emotionally resonant thriller.