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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Book Review: The Vanishing Point by Val McDermid

Posted by Susan C.
Scottish crime series writer and novelist McDermid (The Retribution, Trick of the Dark) has written a stand-alone thriller (The Vanishing Point) that begins with a horrific abduction. Flying to America from London for a holiday, Stephanie Harker watches helplessly as her young charge Jimmy is kidnapped. The backstory begins when ghostwriter Stephanie takes a job writing an autobiography for Scarlett Higgins, a seemingly self-absorbed reality television star. Stephanie feels their relationship grow from that of a professional writer interviewing a client to one of friendship. But circumstances end in tragedy for the duplicitous Scarlett, leaving Stephanie to unravel the mystery that ensues. Using British colloquialisms and local perspectives this read draws you into the UK where afternoon tea and biscuits may differ from our fare but a riveting read reaches across cultures. A delightful reference at the end of the book compares American and British phrases.

VERDICT: Readers of Nikki French (Blue Monday) will relate to the English setting and psychological aspects of McDermids’ latest work.

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