The Missing Hours by Emma Kavanagh – a review

I was lucky enough to receive a copy of Emma Kavanagh’s third book The missing hours from netgalley.

The novel starts with the disappearance of recently widowed Selena Cole, walking away from her two daughters as they play on the swings. She returns a few hours later with no memory of where she has been and there being no trace of her movements. At the same time a body of a lawyer is found having been stabbed in a seemingly motiveless crime. Suspicion soon falls on his husband. Brother and sister Detectives Finn and Leah are assigned to the two cases as they slowly begin to merge together.

This was a really interesting novel. Set in the rather unfamiliar world of kidnap and ransom the story unfolded through a variety of voices including the detectives and those who worked for Cole Associates. There are also police reports, and case files as well as articles written by Selena explaining the origins of the business. I think this is a really good way to tell a story, especially one with so many twists and turns in it.

The characters in the book are all well written and believable. The detectives are given enough background that you care about them, yet not so much that it takes away from the actual investigations. Too often with new characters the majority of the novel is spent introducing them ready for the creation of a new series, whereas this didn’t have that feel (although I think the detectives would make a great series)

Selena Cole is an intriguing character and you never quite know if she is the victim or not. Clearly she has been through some terrible experiences and yet there seems something just a little off about her. Equally the other members of the business Cole associates all seem to be hiding something.

The insight into the world of kidnap and ransom was fascinating. It was a whole area that I didn’t really know existed and it made for a unique background to a murder mystery.

This was a quick read that I read over the course of a couple of days. I really enjoyed the story and despite being a few unanswered questions at the end it was an excellent novel that I’d highly recommend.

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