Friday, April 7, 2017

The Empty Chair by Penny Goetjen

When they received a call telling them her mother had died, her father sends her over to make the arrangements needed to sell the house and bring her mother back for burial.  When she reaches the island and visits the police station, they know nothing of her mother's death.  They tell her to come back the next day and fill out a missing person report.

Secret Harbor Press and Net Galley allowed me to read this book for review (thank you).  It has been published.

The mother was supposed to have drowned but even the Coast Guard know nothing about a boat accident.  Where's her mother and why is she gone?

Olivia has been to her mother's home on the island before.  She finds no clues there.  She met an interesting man at the airport and he's inviting her for drinks.  She asks him what he knows and doesn't find much out.  In the meantime, she keeps looking for her mother.

This story talks about island life and how things move slowly there.  It's hard to get a police investigation started.  She's an outsider and the residents don't want to help.  When she overhears a conversation, she decides to snoop and see what's going on.  She almost gets killed there.  Her mother's house is torched.  Her mother's car is tampered with.  Nobody wants her snooping around.  Then her father gets impatient and comes to "finish things up".  He just gets in the way.

I wish the main character had been portrayed as a stronger woman, but she did what she needed to do.

The last line of the book, though, makes you wonder if it's really all over...

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