Hello mystery fans! I have two very different books, a PI series and a standalone mystery with some...
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Jun 23, 2021

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Mina is trying to focus on her job as a flight attendant, not the problems with her five-year-old daughter back home, or the fissures in her marriage. But as the plane takes off, Mina receives a chilling note from an anonymous passenger: “The following instructions will save your daughter’s life…” When one passenger is killed and then another, Mina knows she must act. But which lives does she save: Her passengers…or her own daughter and husband who are in grave distress back at home? It’s twenty hours to landing. A lot can happen in twenty hours.

Hello mystery fans! I have two very different books, a PI series and a standalone mystery with some thriller moments, that both center missing person cases.

Runner (Cass Raines #4) by Tracy Clark

PI fans should not miss this series which has so much to love. Not only is each book a solid mystery with a great PI lead, but there is also a nun best friend and a pickpocket klepto.

Cass Raines was a former homicide cop who quit after a traumatic incident to become a PI. Her father figure was a priest, murdered in the first book, and she has two childhood friends currently in her life: a nun and a no-longer-criminal who is acting suspicious. Add in dating a recent divorcé with a not-happy-kid and Cass is full up on personal life things considering she likes to keep everyone a good arm’s distance out. So she focuses on work.

The case involves a mother with a history of addiction who recently completed a program and is getting her life back in order. Her daughter, a teenager in foster care, has gone missing and no one is paying the case much attention; they’re just treating it as a runaway case and only see the mother as an addict who doesn’t have custody. But Cass takes the case and decides to look into it, trying her best to work with the assigned police detective on the case and the retired cop also helping out. And by that I mean that Cass is going to piss a lot of people off, because don’t tell her what to do and don’t stand in her way. I like her a lot.

This is one of the few series that I am always up to date with: I love the characters, am always treated to a great mystery that walks readers through an entire case, and I don’t feel so bad sweating during summer while reading about the brutal Chicago winter.

You can jump in here mid- series because anything you need explained is, but I do recommend enjoying the entire series and getting to know Cass and her small circle of peeps–including the diner she’s obsessed with: Broken Places (Review)

(TW side character brief mention of cancer/ suicide scene discovered/ suicide scene, detail/ mentions forced adoption without parent consent)

Local Woman Missing by Mary Kubica

If you’ve been following me talking about books for a bit, you know I’m a big fan of picking up books knowing zero about them. Especially in the crime genre, it really gives maximum experience for all the turns, unfolding, and twists of the story. And this is one of those I was glad to have known nothing about because it really unfolds in a surprising way. So I’m going to skimp on the plot points and then just talk about what I liked most that made this really work for me.

A little over a decade ago three people went missing: a woman while out for a run; later a woman and her young daughter. In the present the young daughter has returned. But now there are even more questions than answers in this small suburban community.

The things I really liked: the way this flashed back to the time of the disappearances and to the present time; the multiple narrators which take us into many different lives all loosely to intimately connected; a look at the Doula profession not in the stereotypical “hippie” way but an interesting and eyeopening look at Obstetrics and the rights people with uteruses aren’t always told/given; the “escape” chapter which was 100% pure psychological thriller; the everyday drama and how it can just be momentary periods in everyday life or sometimes grow too big to feel manageable.

I went with the audiobook for this one–I love multicast narrations–and recommend it if you’re an audiobook listener who can track past and present chapter jumps. They’re clear, so I wasn’t lost, but if you’re a listener who misses things sometimes it can be tricky with the time and POV jumps.

(TW kidnapped child/ briefly mentions past miscarriage, few details/ rumors and assumptions of domestic violence/ fatphobia, diet culture mentions/ recounts past attempted suicide and suicide, both detailed/ topic of medical consent regarding pregnancy and labor)

From The Book Riot Crime Vault

5 Crime Novels Where the Crime Is Beside the Point

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

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