Carystown, Kentucky, is still scarred by the mysterious disappearance a year ago of Isabella Moon. Faced with an almost complete lack of evidence - lack, even, of a body - the case of the missing girl is still open, and, though the commotion and media circus which engulfed the small town has long since subsided, Sheriff Bill Delaney is no nearer a resolution. But Kate Russell knows that Isabella is not missing, but dead. And she knows that her spirit is hardly resting in peace. For the ghost of the young girl has disrupted Kate's quietly idyllic life, beckoning to her to follow, to reveal to Kate the truth about her death...As the ghost of Isabella draws Kate into the investigation, the charming facade of Carystown starts to crumble - the small town will be forever changed by the disappearance of the young girl, undone by murder, secrets, and lies...
About the Author
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, Laura Philpot Benedict worked in public radio and sales promotion before marriage took her to West Virginia, where she began her own copywriting and marketing company. She has received a West Virginia Arts and Humanities Fellowship Grant and a Greenbrier Artists Stipend Grant for her fiction. Her short stories have been published in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine and in the 6th Annual Writer's Digest Short, Short Story Competition Collection. She has been a freelance book reviewer for The Grand Rapids Press (Michigan) and other newspapers since 1997. She resides in southern Illinois with her husband and two children. Isabella Moon is her first novel.
An extraordinary debut reminiscent of The Lovely Bones - both a terrific page-turner and a deeply engrossing read with wonderful characters
Nicely structured prose and an intriguing premise promise much for this novel and it almost sustains that promise. Almost. Unfortunately, as the various strands eventually come together, the conclusion is a little too easy to deduce - and also revealed by the author earlier than one would expect. Although absent in the beginning, the melodrama also gradually makes its presence known, ultimately leaving the reader with the impression that the author was perhaps not completely sure on the best way in which to tie up the loose ends - instead relying on the easy way out. There was also a tendency to repeat certain details and characterisations that could have been picked up with some tighter editing. Overall, a pleasant enough read but not quite as good as it had the potential to be.
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