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Lost Paperback – May 8, 2007

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Det. Insp. Vincent Ruiz (a supporting character in Robotham's debut, Suspect) is hauled out of the Thames with a bullet wound in his leg and no memory of a shooting, let alone how he wound up in the water in Robotham's fine, moody second thriller. Keebal, a nasty cop from internal affairs, hounds Ruiz from the start, and everyone seems to know something Ruiz doesn't. When psychologist Joe O'Loughlin (the protagonist of Suspect) shows Ruiz a picture of young Mickey Carlyle—a seven-year-old girl kidnapped three years earlier whom everyone but Ruiz thinks is dead—he figures there must be some connection between her case and his shooting. Despite his injuries, Ruiz retraces this investigation with the help of his partner, a young Sikh woman named Ali. The past returns in dribs and drabs and none too gently. Mickey is the daughter of a Russian-born crime lord, Aleksei Kuznet; a cache of diamonds and a man known as a "grooming paedophile" also figure prominently in the splintered plot. The warm relationship between Ruiz and Joe, who suffers from Parkinson's, counterpoints the main story line's grit. Robotham works some good wrinkles into Ruiz's relationship with Ali and an empathetic nurse, too. The result is a thoughtful and subtle thriller, with convincing, three-dimensional characters. (Feb.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Adult/High School Robotham's second mystery features some of the cast from Suspect (Doubleday, 2005), including Detective Inspector Vincent Ruiz and clinical psychologist Joseph O'Loughlin. The fast-paced action opens with a half-dead Ruiz being fished out of the Thames. When he awakens from his coma, he has no memory of why he was in the river, almost dead from a bullet wound to his leg, nor can he remember anything from the week leading up to his injury. With the help of O'Loughlin, Ruiz begins piecing together details that show he was following up on the disappearance of eight-year-old Mickey Carlyle. The only problem? Mickey disappeared three years earlier, and a sexual predator has been convicted of her murder. As Ruiz retraces his steps, he relives several incidents from his past that are linked to his need to investigate a closed case. This is a fast-paced thriller with plenty of adventure; Ruiz's hunt for answers takes him deep into the sewers below London and into the cold waters of the Thames. The characters are complex; Ruiz, the son of a Gypsy woman raped by German soldiers in World War II, is haunted by the childhood drowning of his half-brother, even though he's estranged from his own children. Robotham understands that some quests are worth any sacrifice no matter how long the odds of success might be. This is a subtle and taut thriller with convincing characters and strong psychological components. Erin Dennington, Chantilly Regional Library, Fairfax County, VA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; Reprint edition (May 8, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307275485
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307275486
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.8 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (89 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,112,755 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Michael Robotham is a former investigative journalist and ghostwriter, whose psychological thrillers have been translated into 24 languages. He has twice been shortlisted for the CWA UK Steel Dagger in 2007 ('THE NIGHT FERRY') and 2008 ('SHATTER') and twice for for the CWA Gold Dagger in 2013 (SAY YOU'RE SORRY) and 2015 (LIFE OR DEATH). He has twice won Ned Kelly Award for Australia's best crime novel for LOST in 2005 and SHATTER in 2008.

Michael lives in Sydney with his wife and three daughters.
His website is:

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Untouchable on February 8, 2006
Format: Hardcover
After delivering a pulsating debut thriller with The Suspect and introducing us to a couple of characters in Dr Joseph O'Loughlin and DI Vincent Ruiz , who are as opposite to one another as you would want to meet, Michael Robotham has followed up with Lost another riveting thriller.

Lost carries on with O'Loughlin and Ruiz again featuring very prominently. But Robotham has performed a sneaky little switch. In The Suspect, the story was told from the first person perspective of Joe O'Loughlin, a clinical psychologist who had recently been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. The first person perspective is again used in Lost, but this time, the story is being told by Vincent Ruiz and Ruiz is a much more abrasive, in your face character with a very dry sense of humour, as evidenced by the following observation:

"My stepfather died at a bus stop in Bradford in October 1995. He had a stroke on his way to see a heart specialist. See what happens when buses don't run on time?"

The story opens as Detective Inspector Vincent Ruiz is being pulled out of the Thames. He is in a pretty bad way thanks in large part to the bullet that had passed through his leg. He wakes from surgery to find that he has no memory of the incident or of the week leading up to it.

With the help of friend and clinical psychologist Dr Joseph O'Loughlin, Ruiz can piece together enough details to work out that he was working on the disappearance of 8 year old Mickey Carlyle and he was on the Thames to make a kidnapping payoff. The problem with this scenario is that the Mickey Carlyle case was closed 3 years ago and a man is already in prison for the young girl's murder.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Kcorn TOP 500 REVIEWER on February 21, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Both this book, Lost, and a previous book, Suspect, are written in first person. The main difference between the central characters are their values, viewpoints and outlooks on life. I liked Suspect better than Lost - but only marginally.

In Lost, Robotham seems to be a more mature, focused writer, finally revealing the full strength of the promise he showed in his debut novel. This time around, a detective (Inspector Ruiz) suffers from amnesia, not sure how he survived a near drowning and with only brief traces of memories at the edge of his consciousness. The truth emerges in bits and pieces.

If you like mysteries which have strong psychological components, you'll like this one. It has both action and suspense and characters that draw you in.

However, I think you'll get the most out of it if you read Suspect first. The two books really do deserve to be read as a set. Each CAN stand on its own but why miss out on the chance to get even more from each book? They truly complement one another.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Paul Weiss on June 18, 2007
Format: Paperback
Michael Robotham is definitely an author who bears watching!

DI Vincent Ruiz, debuted as a supporting cast member in Robotham's first novel, "Suspect", is rescued from the Thames wounded, bleeding, hypothermic and a good deal more dead than alive. Suffering from transient global amnesia brought on by the trauma of the night's events, Ruiz is initially unable to recall anything at all about what he was doing on a motor launch cruising the Thames in the middle of the night. But it's clear that something very important was going down as he is immediately harassed by Internal Affairs who are treating him more like a criminal than a police officer wounded in the line of duty. With what few clues are available about the shooting and with the help of psychiatrist Joe O'Loughlin, Ruiz begins to painstakingly reconstruct his memories and to pick up the threads of his search for the truth about the kidnapping of seven year old Mickey Carlyle.

Ruiz quickly discovers he is the only detective who believes in the possibility that Mickey Carlyle is still alive despite the conviction and imprisonment of Harlan Wavell, a sexual predator convicted three years earlier for the kidnapping and murder. A blue wall of official obstruction is erected in the path of Ruiz's investigation as the department believes that Ruiz's efforts may lead to the possibility of the killer's release on a technicality.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Deborah on July 10, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I am not at all a fan of English mysteries usually and if I had known Lost was an English mystery before I checked it out from my library, I wouldn't have read it. I'm sure glad I was low on reading material and made myself read it.

The story was told very well and again (as in other books I've liked), the "hero" is very flawed and damaged. You can read the above reviews for the story, but just let me say that a child's death in an accident, even when the survivor is a child himself, can turn a life into a constant emotional battle. I liked the filling in of the background of the character.

When it gets to the parts about crawling through sewers, I happened to have been eating my supper. I pushed my plate away rather than stop reading. (Can I give it a higher recommendation!?)

I can't put the author on the same level as Connelly or James Lee Burke, but I have to say his characters felt to me like they were real people. The ending, in one way, surprised me but I have to say it was thrown at me too fast. I had to think a minute to remember who a particular man was...

This book kept my attention, it made me laugh and be uneasy as well, and entertained me for more than a few hours. I can't imagine being a taken child or the parent of that child....what a living nightmare, but Mr. Robotham gave me a taste.

There's quite a bit of graphic violence too...not as much as McKinty, but more than normal. FYI.

Good book.
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