Blurb: Forty years ago in the small town of Fogg Lake, "The Incident" occurred: an explosion in the cave system that released unknown gases, causing peculiar effects on its residents, such as strange visions and ominous voices. Not wanting the government to get involved, they chalked it up to the hallucinogenic effects of mushrooms. Little did they know these effects would linger through the generations....
Residents Catalina Lark and Olivia Dayton have been best friends for years and own an investigation firm together, using what they call the "other sight" to help with their business. When Olivia goes missing, Cat frantically begins the search for her alone when the town does nothing about it. When scientist Slater Arganbright shows up, she has no choice but to accept his help even though there's something about him she just can't trust. The duo discovers someone is hunting the two witnesses of a murder in Fogg Lake fourteen years ago—the very one Cat and Olivia witnessed as teens, one that they couldn't prove happened. Cat and Slater's search for Olivia takes them down a rabbit hole that is far more dangerous and mysterious than they ever expected, and with a killer in their midst, neither of them can foresee who will come out alive.
Review: Jayne Ann Krentz is an automatic buy. I don't even bother reading the blurb anymore. Just click that order button and then wait for my book to come in the mail. That's right. I'm paying hardcover prices for Krentz books. That should tell you how much I adore them. Of course, it's part nostalgia given that she was the author who turned me onto the romance genre as a whole.
No one writes romantic suspense like Krentz. Heck, no one writes like Krentz in general. It doesn't matter if she's writing as Jayne Ann Krentz, Amanda Quick, Jayne Castle, Stephanie James, or Jayne Taylor (that's a new pen name I just discovered). If you're wondering if she regrets all those pen names, the answer is yes. If you want more details you can read a 2016 blog post she wrote on the subject by clicking here.
Like I said, I didn't scan the blurb before I began reading, which is always a weird sensation... going into a book with nothing but the title to guide you. I love it and hate it simultaneously. When I started reading and realized that we were delving into Krentz's world of psychic abilities I started grinning because there is nothing better than a romantic suspense paired with psychics who can solve crimes, kill people, and protect themselves with their abilities. No rules, no limits, no boundaries.
The heroes and heroines in Krentz's follow a predictable character structure. The women are intelligent, strong, stubborn, and brave. The men are serious, surly, and protective of their women. But I've read most--and I do mean most--of Krentz's novels and I never get bored of them. Catalina has no interest in being used by the Arganbright family, not again, and she doesn't care that Slater has every nerve in her body awakening. She's still not going to let him walk all over her. And Slater is slightly damaged following a psychic shock, but that doesn't mean he's unable to keep his woman safe. He's also not going to stand in her way--Krentz heroes rarely do (in her more modern works, at least).
The Vanishing is brilliant because you have all this angst and drama and tension and danger, but it's not within Slater and Catalina's relationship. You never doubt them. You're not subjected to internal strife or fights, but rather you're focused entirely on the outside mystery and the burgeoning love between the hero and heroine (also, I pride myself on guessing the ends of books and movies--I guessed the end to Big Little Lies on episode 2, but I can never quite figure out Krentz's mysteries, so there's that...). Sometimes I like that kind of drama, but there's also a comfort that comes in being 100% confident about the romance.
All in all this is a fabulous start to what is sure to be a very mysterious romantic suspense series. I'm loving the new plots and characters and swoons. If you love the paranormal there is no doubt you'll love what Krentz has to offer both in general and in The Vanishing.
The Amazon pre-order price is strangely set to 13.99 for a hardcover novel (as of 8/16/2019), so jump on that. But you can also purchase the book through your local independent bookstore. The book releases January 2020 (sorry for the long wait, loves).