Saturday, August 17, 2019

ARC Review: Stolen Things by R. H. Herron

Stolen Things
Author: R. H. Herron
Publication: Dutton (August 20, 2019)

Description: A sensational crime, a missing teen, and a mother and daughter with no one to trust but each other come together in this shocking debut thriller by R. H. Herron.

“Mama? Help me.”

Laurie Ahmadi has worked as a 911 police dispatcher in her quiet Northern California town for almost two decades, but nothing in her nearly twenty years of experience could prepare her for the worst call of her career—her teenage daughter, Jojo, is on the other end of the line. She is drugged, disoriented, and in pain, and even though the whole police department springs into action, there is nothing Laurie can do to help.

Jojo, who has been sexually assaulted, doesn’t remember how she ended up at the home of Kevin Leeds, a pro football player famous for his work with the Citizens Against Police Brutality movement, though she insists he would never hurt her. And she has no idea where her best friend, Harper, who was with her earlier in the evening, could be.

As Jojo and Laurie begin digging into Harper’s private messages on social media to look for clues to her whereabouts, they uncover a conspiracy far bigger than they ever could have imagined. With Kevin’s freedom on the line and the chances of finding Harper unharmed slipping away, Laurie and Jojo begin to realize that they can’t trust anyone to find Harper except themselves, not even the police department they’ve long considered family . . . and time is running out.

My Thoughts: Police dispatcher Laurie Ahmadi lives a parent's worst nightmare when she answers a 911 call and hears her daughter asking for help. JoJo is sixteen, she's been sexually assaulted and drugged, when she awakens in the house of pro football player Kevin Leeds. Laurie rushes to the scene, sure that Kevin is the one who raped her daughter. But JoJo is equally sure that he did not.

Kevin and JoJo became friends while they were volunteering for CapB - Citizens Against Police Brutality. JoJo has kept this secret from her police dispatcher mother and police chief father who have both told her to stay away from CapB. JoJo is also keeping secret that she and former friend Harper Cunnigham have rekindled their friendship.

While the body of Kevin's friend Zachary Gordon is stashed in a closet just feet away from where JoJo was, Harper is missing. With a blank space in her memory where the past evening should be, JoJo doesn't know how they got to Kevin's and where Harper could be.

The stress of the evening has caused Omar Ahmadi to have a heart attack which leaves no one to help Laurie investigate to find Harper and find out what happened to JoJo. Her investigation leads to all sorts of secrets and corruption in their police department and Laurie, JoJo, and Kevin are on their own because they don't know who can be trusted in the police department. Even Omar isn't in the clear!

This was a pulse-pounding, fast-paced thriller with intriguingly human characters. I couldn't put it down!

Favorite Quote:
"I'll help you kill him. If you need me to." Sarah cleared her throat. "Of course, let me state for the record that I'm joking."

Laurie knew she wasn't. "Thanks, friend."
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from Edelweiss. You can buy your copy here.

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