cover image Girl Last Seen

Girl Last Seen

Nina Laurin. Grand Central, $14.99 trade paper (368p) ISBN 978-1-4555-6902-1

Laine Moreno, the traumatized narrator of Laurin’s emotionally powerful but plot-challenged debut thriller, is barely managing to sleepwalk through her solitary existence in Seattle a decade after being freed from three years of horror at the hands of a captor who was never caught. Then the highly publicized disappearance of 10-year-old girl Olivia Shaw gives her a jolt. Although the missing girl comes from privilege, a world away from Laine’s precarious childhood with a junkie single mom, their physical resemblance is startling enough to suggest to Laine that their cases might be connected. The same notion strikes Det. Sean Ortiz, one of the two cops who initially discovered Laine by the edge of a deserted road. All too swiftly, Laine’s efforts to help save Olivia start to threaten both her tenuous stability and her life itself. Laurin creates a compelling, vulnerable central character, but Det. Ortiz and several members of the supporting cast function largely as devices to propel a story arc ultimately more clever than convincing. [em]Agent: Rachel Eckstrom, Irene Goodman Literary Agency. (June) [/em]