The New York City subway was dangerous, the parents told the three Wilton High School graduates, but the girls weren’t taking no for an answer. Kelly Singleton, soon to be an NYU freshman, and her two friends board the hazardous subway train. Several stops later, her two friends get off, but Kelly is nowhere to be found. It is the torrid August of 1984, and crime is at an all-time high. Kelly’s desperate parents turn to reporter Carol Rossi and police detective Jerry Stevenson to find their missing daughter.
This book had so much promise and potential. and while it was’t a bad book, I felt that it was lacking in something. I’ve read a lot of books in this genre, both good and bad, and this one fell somewhere in the middle for me.
The plot is an excellent idea, I mean a busy subway and a young girl disappearing without anyone seeing. It’s plausible, realistic, and frighteningly close to home in that it could happen to anyone. The characters were relateable and realistic – perfect to carry this book (obviously the second in a series, yet a perfect stand alone). Rossi is plucky, and I loved her from the moment I met her. Her heart and sympathy for Kelly, the missing girl, makes the reader want her to find her – be the saviour of the story.
The supporting cast of characters fit in very well, and it’s obvious that Hayes loves each and every one of them. It’s also very clear that she has done a hell of a lot of research into gangs and police procedures involving abduction. The descriptions and the way Hayes informs the reader while Rossi researches for herself is an excellent tool, if not sometimes a little overwhelming in amounts.
The chapters from Kelly’s POV are heartbreaking and chilling. I couldn’t imagine finding the strength to deal with what she does in such a calm way. Thankfully, none of these chapters are too graphic – Hayes errs on the cautious side, allowing the reader’s imagination to do all the work.
The reason for my 3 star (*more like a 3.75 in all honesty*) rating is the ending. It felt a little rushed and a bit too clean and perfect, which in turn, for me personally, made it feel unrealistic. I simply couldn’t picture things happening that way, and so easily. I kept expecting a twist that never came. Yet, I felt I couldn’t stop reading the book because I wanted to know how it ended.
I will certainly read more of Dorothy Hayes’ book because a) I’m a big fan of the genre, and b) it was a good book, just not a great one at the end.