This is a review from a previous year. I picked up the book because I was looking for a suspense book for the library’s summer reading program. Miss Adventure picked this author off the shelf. The liner notes mentioned what a masterful suspense writer Hoag was and I recognized her name, so I figured why not.
Length: 557 pages
Setting: Florida, present day
Summary: Elena Estes is a washed out cop whose friend Sean has let her live in his guest house in exchange for her working his horses. Elena is hired by Molly Seabright to investigate why her sister Erin, is missing. While looking into her disappearance, Elena uncovers a dysfunctional family and illegal activities in the horse barn where Erin worked. Elena gets the police involved, but does a lot towards solving the case herself.
Final thoughts: Elena seemed a bit hard-boiled for me at the beginning, but by the end I was really pulling for her. Her motto was, “Your life can change in a heartbeat.” I didn’t appreciate how the story was told real-time, but Elena kept making comments about how she made the wrong choice at this or that time. However, I never guessed the ending. There were too many high-quality potential bad guys and she STILL managed to bring in a twist at the end.
I enjoyed the book and planned on reading more by her, but I don’t think I ever did.
Title comes from: Elena was the dark horse who wasn’t expected to solve the crime
Reading challenges fulfilled: none since this is a review of a book read in a previous year
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