When All the Girls Have Gone

final_JAK.inddWhen Charlotte Sawyer is unable to contact her stepsister, Jocelyn, to tell her that one of her closest friends was found dead, she discovers that Jocelyn has vanished.

Beautiful, brilliant—and reckless—Jocelyn has gone off the grid before, but never like this. In a desperate effort to find her, Charlotte joins forces with Max Cutler, a struggling PI who recently moved to Seattle after his previous career as a criminal profiler went down in flames—literally. Burned out, divorced and almost broke, Max needs the job.

After surviving a near-fatal attack, Charlotte and Max turn to Jocelyn’s closest friends, women in a Seattle-based online investment club, for answers. But what they find is chilling…

When her uneasy alliance with Max turns into a full-blown affair, Charlotte has no choice but to trust him with her life. For the shadows of Jocelyn’s past are threatening to consume her—and anyone else who gets in their way…

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This is my first Jayne Ann Krentz novel so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect.  After reading a number of dark, suspense thrillers, the need for some lighter reading and the idea of a romance mystery intrigued me.  I was excited to start the novel and was not disappointed.  When All the Girls Have Gone had just the right amount of romance and uncertainty to make this an enjoyable read.

Charlotte Sawyer and Max Cutler are vulnerable characters, both having past experiences that have marked their personalities.  Charlotte has finally found a job that she enjoys, activities director at Rainy Creek Gardens Retirement Home.  Her job choice does not expose her to the world of wealth and exotic locations like her stepsister Jocelyn’s job in finance, but it is a job that she loves.  After all, she is the “one step in front of the other” type of gal.  So, when Charlotte’s stepsister is missing, she does the only thing she can do, joins forces with PI Matt Cutler.

Matt recently returned to Seattle after obsessions from his past lead him to make mistakes in his career as a profiler, hence losing his job.  Matt is hired to investigate the death/suicide of Louise Flint, close friend to Jocelyn and member of Jocelyn’s investment club.  He immediately questions the validity of labelling Louise’s death an overdose and goes to work.

As far as a mystery goes, I didn’t find this one to have a lot of twists.  There is an interesting tidbit at the end that I really enjoyed.  One might consider the mystery to be somewhat complicated in that there are several things going on in the story.  Jocelyn was raped as a teenager and has not stopped searching for the rapist.  The question then, is Jocelyn’s disappearance related to what she has uncovered or is it related to Louise’s death?

I have to add that the secondary characters in this book are fabulous.  I loved hearing the voices of the senior citizens from the retirement home and thought Ethel was a hoot.  I also really liked Anson Salinas, Matt’s foster father/retired policeman who lives across the street from him and look forward to learning more about Matt’s stepbrothers in novels to come.

3.5/5 stars

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