Review: When her husband disappears with their two children after staying a night in a motel on their way to visit his parents, Liz Daniels is frantic with worry. But when she comes to realize his leaving was intentional, she's angry but no less determined to find him and get her children back, in Ruin Falls, a novel of suspense by Jenny Milchman.
Given that no crime had been committed, the police can offer Liz no assistance. And though her in-laws seem to know something, she can get nothing from them. Indeed, her husband Paul had been estranged from his father since high school. Returning home, Liz realizes that Paul had been planning his departure for some time, and made an effort to erase all traces of his presence before leaving. But he missed something when he wiped his computer clean, a link to a mysterious website, one that if Liz can figure out how to get past the password-required entry, might give her a clue as to where Paul had taken her children … and why.
Ruin Falls is a somewhat uneven novel, one that opens with an intriguing premise, and ends with a rather thrilling conclusion, but one that largely fails to maintain any meaningful level of suspense throughout its lengthy, and somewhat overwritten (and overwrought) middle section. Liz insists, of course, on pursuing every lead herself, that somehow trusting anyone, whether it be a close friend or a stranger, with any information would somehow give her less control over the situation she finds herself in. But by putting so much attention on her as a character, it lessens the suspense over what happened to Paul and their children and pulls the story into areas that really aren't very interesting. A mixed review: a solid, well-crafted story but centered on a character that, despite circumstances that should make her sympathetic to the reader, isn't all that appealing.
Acknowledgment: Random House provided an eARC of Ruin Falls for this review.
Review Copyright © 2014 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
Cover of Snow
Ballantine (Hardcover), January 2013
ISBN-13: 9780345534217; ISBN-10: 0345534212
Location(s) referenced in Ruin Falls: Upstate New York
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Ruin Falls by Jenny Milchman
Publication Date: April 2014
List Price: $26.00
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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
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