cover image The Monsters We Make

The Monsters We Make

Kali White. Crooked Lane, $26.99 (272p) ISBN 978-1-64385-388-8

At the start of this gripping novel from White (The Good Divide as Kali VanBaale), 13-year-old Christopher Stewart vanishes while on his early morning paper route in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1984. The aftermath of his kidnapping unfolds through the perspectives of 12-year-old paperboy Sammy Cox, who has a weighty secret; his 18-year-old sister, Crystal, an aspiring journalist who writes an essay about Christopher’s disappearance; and Sgt. Dale Goodkind, of the Crimes Against Persons Section of the Des Moines PD. Two years earlier, Dale worked on the still unsolved case of another missing paperboy. The experience has left him clinically depressed, a condition he hides from his colleagues. His assignment to the Stewart case puts even more strain on his fragile mental health. His unraveling engages just as much as the search for clues. Dale, Crystal, and Sammy each evolves and becomes more self-aware as White skillfully keeps readers questioning everyone’s motives. Fans of character-driven crime fiction will be satisfied. Agent: Julia Kenny, Dunow, Carlson & Lerner Literary. (June)