Title: Missing, Presumed (DS Manon #1)
Author: Susie Steiner
Genre: Adult, Crime
Length: 400 pages
Publisher: The Borough Press
Release Date: February 25, 2016
Reviewed by: Jasmyn
Mid-December, and Cambridgeshire is blanketed with snow. Detective Sergeant Manon Bradshaw tries to sleep after yet another soul-destroying Internet date – the low murmuring of her police radio her only solace.
Over the airwaves come reports of a missing woman – door ajar, keys and phone left behind, a spatter of blood on the kitchen floor. Manon knows the first 72 hours are critical: you find her, or you look for a body. And as soon as she sees a picture of Edith Hind, a Cambridge post-graduate from a well-connected family, she knows this case will be big.
Is Edith alive or dead? Was her ‘complex love life’ at the heart of her disappearance, as a senior officer tells the increasingly hungry press? And when a body is found, is it the end or only the beginning?
If you love guessing up until the very end, then this is the book for you. Clues and misdirections abound, mixed perfectly to lead you down countless potential trails of exploration. Manon is a unique character and the first book in this series shows us how intricately woven her personal and professional lives. Both sides of her life have such an impact on each other and I really enjoyed being fully immersed into her life (and it's an interesting one).
My one and only dislike about Manon is she is a bit too depressed most of the book. She's a little too lost at times, and one period of being lost is followed up by another one - while she may be on the ball professionally, her personal life is a mess - but I needed a little bright side to it before the end of the book.
But, we're really reading this for the crime. Edith is missing, foul play is almost certain, and the police are rapidly running out of time. This part of the story was beyond perfect. I really enjoyed seeing the glimpses into Edith's parents' lives and the lives of her friends that are involved in the investigation. Things don't go smoothly, and things go horribly wrong at one point. In fact, I think it's safe to say it all starts to fall apart.
But there is a solution to the case. It isn't what I expected (which is good), but looking back through the bits and pieces of clues I can see it (which is good). It's a little out there, but completely believable. If Manon could just find a little light in her life, then I think this book would be just about perfect.