From Publishers Weekly
A child abduction with elements of the Elizabeth Smart case triggers this pallid romantic suspense novel from Edgar-finalist MacDonald (The Unforgiven
). When she was nine, Tess DeGraff witnessed the knifepoint kidnapping of her teenage sister, Phoebe, by a wild-eyed man with a ponytail who warned her that breaking her silence would lead to her sister's death. Phoebe's abused corpse was found shortly afterward, and a local sex offender, Lazarus Abbott, was executed after Tess described the abductor and pointed to him in court. Two decades later, DNA evidence exonerates Abbott, and Tess becomes vilified in Abbott's New Hampshire home town, leading her to some awkward amateur sleuthing to uncover the truth. Her implausible relationship with Ben Ramsey, the attorney representing the Abbott family, fails to distract readers from identifying Phoebe's real killer, hidden by only a scant handful of red herrings. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Having witnessed her teenage sister's violent abduction from their tent at a remote New Hampshire campground, 9-year-old Tessa DeGraff is the only person who can identify Phoebe's rapist and murderer. Relying heavily on the strength of her eyewitness account, police arrest a local man, Lazarus Abbott, who is tried, convicted, and executed for the crime. All this took place before DNA testing became commonplace, and now, 20 years later, Abbott's family wants their belief in his innocence verified. When the lab results prove them right, Abbott's family sets out to exact revenge upon Tessa and her young son, Erny. Determined to find out what really happened the night her sister was killed, Tessa finds an unlikely ally in Ben Ramsey, the Abbott's idealistic young lawyer, and an unexpected enemy in one of the town's most prominent citizens. With an intuitive and sympathetic heroine, inventive and unanticipated plot twists, MacDonald's captivating mystery is a buoyant blend of sweaty-palms suspense and you-go-girl adventure. Haggas, Carol