Det. Chief Insp. John Marvel, the misanthropic policeman in this intricate, surprise-filled crime novel from British author Bauer (Blacklands), can “see the bad in anyone.” Marvel is still obsessed by his failure to solve the case of Edie Evans, a preteen who vanished on her way to school a year earlier. The inspector is drawn into another mystery when he crosses paths with Anna Buck, whose four-year-old son, Daniel, disappeared right in front of their home after her husband negligently left the front door open. The last tangible evidence of her child is footprints Daniel left in a newly laid patch of cement, which she dutifully cleans every day. Anna’s despair leads her to a psychic, who happens to have been the same person Marvel turned to at one point in the Evans case. The solution is fairly clued, but it’s Bauer’s talent at making the characters’ emotional lives (especially Anna’s) palpable that makes this a standout. Agent: Jane Gregory, Gregory & Company (U.K.). (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 11/09/2015 Release date: 01/12/2016 Genre: Fiction
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