Book Review Of “The Vanishing Season” By Joanna Schaffhausen @minotaurbooks


Ellery Hathaway knows a thing or two about serial killers, but not through her police training. She’s an officer in sleepy Woodbury, MA, where a bicycle theft still makes the newspapers. No one there knows she was once victim number seventeen in the grisly story of serial killer Francis Michael Coben. The only victim who lived.

When three people disappear from her town in three years, all around her birthday—the day she was kidnapped so long ago—Ellery fears someone knows her secret. Someone very dangerous. Her superiors dismiss her concerns, but Ellery knows the vanishing season is coming and anyone could be next. She contacts the one man she knows will believe her: the FBI agent who saved her from a killer’s closet all those years ago.

Agent Reed Markham made his name and fame on the back of the Coben case, but his fortunes have since turned. His marriage is in shambles, his bosses think he’s washed up, and worst of all, he blew a major investigation. When Ellery calls him, he can’t help but wonder: sure, he rescued her, but was she ever truly saved? His greatest triumph is Ellery’s waking nightmare, and now both of them are about to be sucked into the past, back to the case that made them…with a killer who can’t let go. (From Goodreads)


Thank you Minotaur Books for sending me an ARC in exchange of an honest review.

I decided to hold off on reviewing this book prior to publication day, cause I wanted to buddy read this with a Bookstagram group called @blackheartreads

I loved it! Did I figure out who it was? yes almost instantly, but that did not take away from the story. I love Ellery and Reed, I had such affection for the both of them. Both flawed, and imperfect, and so loveable.

The thing with books of this subject matter, kidnapped and held hostage teen girls and women, you kind of just know that there is going to be some kind of abuse and rape situations that are going to occur. Authors usually tend to go one of two ways, way to descriptive, or they allude to it, and let you know it happened, without saying it happened. Without describing every horrific detail, because lets face it, who wants to read that? Joanna, did a fantastic job of letting us know that Ellery went through something tragic, and horrific, without making us read the details, so major kudos to her!

I really did enjoy her writing style, it flowed nicely, this was such a fast read for me. I absolutely did not want to put it down, I wanted to know the why, because I was 99% certain I knew the who. When it got to the end, I appreciated the why, but part of me wished the why was described in more detail. But also that is just my opinion. I was kind of just left wanting more, ya know? Either way, this was a great book, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Have you read it? Please share your thoughts in the comments!

Buy On Amazon Here

Touched, Ellie liked to think of it sometimes as she traced her scars in the dark. She’d been touched.

Ellie knew “touched” could mean gifted or insane. Maybe she was both.


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