Friday, April 26, 2013

The Face of the Earth by Deborah Raney

About the Book:

What if she never came home . . . ?

When Mitchell Brannon’s beloved wife sets off for home after a conference, he has no idea that his life is about to change forever. Mitch returns from work early that evening, surprised that Jill’s car isn’t in the garage. But her voice on the answering machine makes him smile. “Hey, babe, I’m just now checking out of the hotel, but I’ll stop and pick up something for dinner. Love you.” Hours later, Jill still hasn’t returned, and Mitch’s irritation turns to dread.

When the police come up empty, Mitch enlists the help of their next-door neighbor, Jill’s best friend, Shelley, to help search. As hours turn into days and days into weeks, Mitch and Shelley’s friendship grows ever closer—and decidedly more complicated.

Every lead seems to be a dead end, and Mitch wonders how he can honor the vows he made to a woman who has seemingly disappeared from the face of the earth.

My Thoughts:

This is going to sound very bizarre...but I was never so glad to reach the end of a novel as I was with this one!  The drama was so intense, I found it SO hard to keep reading and not sneak a peek at the ending.  Deborah Raney has out-written herself with her newest release!

"The Face of the Earth" presents two questions for the reader.  First, just how far would you go to find a loved one who's simply vanished without a trace or a clue.  Second, how long is 'til death do we part'...especially in a case like this one?

Jill Brannon is a happy wife and mother who disappears while returning home from a conference, leaving her family baffled and hurting.  Did she run away?  Did she plan to disappear?

When Mitch learns about some secrets Jill was keeping, he doesn't know what to think or how to feel.  And it doesn't help that Shelley, Jill's best friend and their neighbor, is being so helpful and kind.

When will he have done enough to find Jill?  When does he give up?  Does he ever give up?  Will he ever find her?

This was a page flipper for me, keeping me up late into the night.  I kept telling myself 'just one more chapter'...yeah, right!  I couldn't stop until I'd reached the conclusion...which I'm not going to tell you about.

Each and every character had personality and depth...even Jill, absent for the majority of the book (no pun intended).  You get to know her through memories and flashbacks, and through discussions with family and friends.

And the agony each character feels is palpable.  I imagine Deborah had tears in her eyes through most of the writing.  I know I had them for most of the reading, even having to put the book down long enough to go hug my husband or one of my kids...

...and to urge them to 'look for me if I disappear one day'.  And the ending...oh, the ending...

Let's just say you may or may not be happy with Deborah's ending.  But it does give a lot of food for thought on just what you and I would do if someone we loved vanished from "The Face of the Earth".

I received a copy of "The Face of the Earth" from Howard Publishing in exchange for an honest review.  Do NOT begin this novel unless you have enough time to finish it or you have nerves of steel and the patience of Job.  It will grip you and not let go until the final page is turned.

"The Face of the Earth" is available in May 2013 and is highly recommended.  Have I mentioned 2013 is a good year to be a reader??

Happy Reading!



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