Thriller: Girl Missing, by Tess Gerritsen

Girl MissingEarly Tess

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Drug addicts from the projects are dying of overdoses of an unidentifiable substance. Those who run the city are not especially concerned, but medical examiner Kat Novak, who grew up in that neighborhood, is determined to find out what’s going on. Adam Quantrell is the handsome, wealthy CEO of a local pharmaceutical giant, whose wild-child step daughter has been missing for some time. When Kat contacts him about the lethal drug, and tells Adam about her roots, he asks her to assist him in locating the girl.

Tess Gerritsen, known for her taut crime novels, started out writing romantic thrillers. Girl Missing is one of her earliest efforts (1994), and boy, does it show. To extend the benefit of the doubt, perhaps it’s merely time that makes this book seem mundane, contrived, and predictable, and loaded with cliches. Parts of this plot are downright silly. Kat and Adam land in some extremely perilous situations, but that never stops them from jumping right back in danger, not even when Kat’s home is blown up as she watches from the sidewalk (she had forgotten something in the car and went out not a moment too soon.)

Readers who enjoy romance novels with an aura of menace may find this novel satisfying, but if you’re hoping for something in the way of a true thriller/police procedural, give it a miss.

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