Title: Missing Persons: A Kate Conway Mystery
Author: Clare O’Donoghue
Release Date: May 31, 2011
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Kate Conway is a freelance television producer, and she’s just been hired to put together a new true crime show, Missing Persons. The subject of the first show is a woman named Teresa Moretti who has been missing for a year. As Kate digs into Teresa’s disappearance and gets to know those closest to her, Kate’s soon-to-be-ex husband dies mysteriously. As Kate finds herself in the center of a police investigation, she begins to uncover evidence that Teresa may not have been as perfect as she seemed.
Missing Persons is a novel that revolves around the magnetism of its main character, Kate Conway. Kate is a great main character; O’Donoghue developed her enough to where she could carry this book on her own. She’s sympathetic and tough, but also very realistic. She has no illusions about her job and knows that she is supposed to exploit Teresa’s family and friends, ensuring she gets the best story possible (as opposed to the truth). While her job bothers her sometimes, Kate manages to do her job while also trying to do the right thing.
The production of a true crime television program is detailed in Missing Persons, and it really is a fascinating process. It’s amazing how much footage Kate needs for just a twenty two minute show. It was very interesting to learn the ins and outs of how a program like this is put together and it added a nice dimension to the book. Additionally, O’Donoghue’s writing is vivid and well-structured, so that it’s easy for readers to picture what the finished program might look like.
At its core, Missing Persons is a mystery, and it succeeds very well at that. The twists and turns of the book are well-plotted and, thankfully, the ending isn’t predictable. O’Donoghue keeps her readers guessing from beginning to end. The novel keeps a constant, fast pace; as a result, it’s a great choice if you’re looking for a book to read in one sitting.
It seems as though Missing Persons is the first in a new series starring Kate Conway, which is completely welcome news. It’s a fresh, creative novel with a great premise. The TV show angle means that Kate won’t run out of mysteries anytime soon, and O’Donoghue has developed a memorable cast of characters in this first outing. I thoroughly enjoyed Missing Persons and recommend it to anyone in the mood for a quick, snappy mystery novel.