Watch Her Vanish
Rockwell and Decker, Book #1
By Ellery A. Kane
Brought to you by OBS reviewer Andra
Fear hits her like a wave crashing against the sheer cliffs nearby. She sees the woman’s feet first, then the legs bent like broken driftwood. Then, the blouse strewn open; the marks on her beautiful neck. Her knees buckle as a hand grabs her elbow to break her fall.
Forced home to Fog Harbor, California, to look after her little sister, Criminal Psychologist Olivia Rockwell is struggling to adjust to life in a town so small she can hardly breathe. Until, at church one morning, the sound of a scream leads her to the body of a missing local teacher in the shallows nearby. All the evidence points to Olivia’s most threatening patient, Drake, who is safely locked up behind bars…
Convinced of Drake’s innocence—and desperate to believe in the system that’s keeping her own murderer father behind bars—Olivia gets to work on her own suspect list. All her life she’s run towards trouble, but this time she’s treading on the toes of brooding and handsome Detective Will Decker.
Then a second woman’s body is discovered, strangled while out on an evening jog. The strip of blue material used to choke her implicates Drake once again, forcing Olivia and Will to admit they are out of their depth and must work together to crack the case.
The deeper they dig, the deadlier the trail becomes. It’s clear more innocent women will die if they don’t get one step ahead. But then a note written on a scrap of paper found in the last victim’s car leads them to a terrifying realization: the killer has his sights on Olivia’s little sister as the next victim. (Goodreads)
Watch Her Vanish is the first in a new series titled Rockwell and Decker, by Ellery Kane. It is a gripping and engaging crime thriller which kept me on the edge, not knowing what would happen next. I was fully engrossed in the story from the outset – at the prologue and throughout the entire story.
The main character, Dr. Olivia Rockwell, works as the head criminal psychologist at Crescent Bay State Prison (CBSP) in Fog Harbor, California. Obviously not a pleasant job as she has to deal with the inmates, but when the notorious inmate Drake is the prime suspect in a murder Dr. Rockwell has various conflicting thoughts on his culpability for the murder. Olivia first encounters the new handsome detective Will Decker when entering the church for a public vigil of missing Bonnie McMillan. And as one would suspect – they did not hit it off immediately… it was interesting to see how their relationship evolved over the course of the story. Back to the vigil – Olivia steps out early and then hears a scream, which she runs to. Unfortunately, the discovery is the body of Bonnie so now there is a murder to solve, not just a disappearance. And as one reads on, there are more murders. So who is the murderer? And are the deaths connected?
I found the process of identifying the killer(s) intriguing and definitely kept me on my toes. I thought I would have it figured out and then new pieces of information would emerge. Happy to report that I was stumped until it was just too obvious. Just the way I like mysteries.
The relationship between Olivia and Will certainly had me interested. Its development is a slow burn and I appreciated all the nuances presented. VERY glad to see two main characters taking it slow. The reader was presented with interesting backstories for the main characters, so motivations became evident.
The glimpse we got of prison life was interesting and frankly, one I had not given much thought to. I found it enlightening and informative. Certainly not an environment I would be comfortable working in. Kudo’s to those that do!
There were many twists and turns throughout. Additionally, there were other storylines which I anticipate will parley into more in-depth stories as the series continues, but kept me interested. I cannot wait to further explore the lives of Olivia, her sister Emily and Detective Will Decker. I have already downloaded the second book two in the Rockwell and Decker series, Her Perfect Bones, to my e-reader and I am ready to begin reading ☺.
If you like good character development, a true mystery and good writing – then I suggest this first in a new series book by Ellery Kane! You will definitely enjoy Watch Her Vanish.