Sunday, July 12, 2020

Review: Gone by Midnight by Candice Fox

Gone by Midnight (Crimson Lake, Book #3)
by Candice Fox
Release Date: March 10th 2020
2020 Forge
Kindle Edition;372 Pages
ISBN: 978-1473563650
Genre: Fiction / Mystery
Source: Review copy from publisher

4 / 5 Stars

On the fifth floor of the White Caps Hotel, four young boys are left alone while their parents dine downstairs.

But when one of the parents checks on the children at midnight, they discover one of them is missing.

The boys swear they stayed in their room. CCTV confirms that none of them left the building. No trace of the child is found.

Now the hunt is on to find him, before it’s too late – and before the search for a boy becomes a search for a body...

My Thoughts
Gone by Midnight is the third instalment in the Crimson Lake series, and we return to world of Ted Conkaffey, wrongly arrested for child molestation and abduction charges years before in Australia.  In this book, he is contacted by a mother who is frantic over her missing child and reaches out to Ted to help her as she doesn't trust the police to tell her anything about the investigation.  It also turns out that Ted is finally given some time with his daughter, Lillian, and he struggles to balance his duties as an investigator with his duties as a parent.   

I am a huge fan of this series as it doesn't take the traditional approach we usually see in murder-mystery stories.  If you've been a follower of this series, then you will know about Ted's history and how he was forced out of his job as a police officer due to his wrongful accusations as a child molester and abductor.  It actually features two outcasts in society as Ted's partner, Amanda, also has a past that follows her around as well as an incident with a police officer last year that could be termed as 'troubling'.  I have really enjoyed the character development in these books as well as this author's ability to create two such interesting personalities, even if they can be somewhat aggravating at times.  In this book, Ted is learning to come to terms with his past and is starting to take risks in his life that he would not normally take for the sake of his child as he wants her to grow up being a normal kid.  I really enjoyed seeing Ted come out of his shell a little bit in this book and venture forth.

The plot was interesting even if it was predictable, and by predictable I mean it was pretty easy to figure out what happened and who was responsible.  That didn't take away from my enjoyment of the investigation however, as the author created an interesting story and I enjoyed the interactions between the characters.  Amanda is a fun character and it is never boring when she appears in the story as you never know what is going to happen.  There were quite a few twists and turns, but because I narrowed in one person right from the beginning, I didn't really fall for them.  The story was very well-developed though, and some things from previous books were resolved in this one; however, enough back-story was provided so if you were not really familiar with the previous books you would still understand what was going on.  This author has a nice writing style which makes it really easy to get caught up in what is happening.  I definitely enjoyed the descriptions of Australia, and loved some of the witty dialogue, especially some of the expressions by Lillian.  I know I'll never be able to look at a crocodile again with hearing Lillian's voice whispering in my ear.  

Gone by Midnight was an enjoyable, if predictable, read.  It can definitely be read as a stand alone so if you haven't read the previous books in this series, you can jump right in here.  There is an interesting psychological discussion about whether you saw what you actually saw in this book or if you saw something because you were told you saw something and when.  These kinds of things make you think about witnesses and how accurate they really are.  The books has pretty much everything; humour, suspense, investigation, and some tense scenes.  I definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good mystery novel. 


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