My rating: 4 of 5 stars
One Small Sacrifice by Hilary Davidson *
Alex Traynor had been a war photojournalist and worked in the world’s most dangerous environments. After being shot during one of his battlefield forays, he came home with a damaged leg, a case of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), a drug addiction, and a fiancé, Dr. Emily Teare, Emily operated on his wound in the field and gave him his single purpose he has to go on living.
It wasn’t always so cut and dried, though. A year earlier, at a low point in his life, a close friend, Cori Stanton, had fallen off the roof of Alex’s building and the circumstances were never clear. Alex blamed himself for not preventing it. Cori’s father and Sheryn Sterling, the investigating detective on the case, believed Alex had a more direct role in Cori’s death.
Now, a year later, Emily has disappeared, leaving behind a type-written note and many questions. Detective Sterling believes that once again Alex is the prime suspect in a woman’s disappearance, and she’s determined not to let him slip through her hands this time.
In One Small Sacrifice, Hilary Davidson has combined the best aspects of a police procedural with a suspense novel. As the reader we follow both Alex and Detective Sterling as they try to solve the puzzle of what’s happened to Emily and who is responsible. We see things that each of them sees that the other doesn’t, but never everything, and that helps ramp up the narrative tension.
Davidson’s plot is tightly written, but nuanced, the story seeded with enough alternatives to keep the reader guessing throughout. Characters are complex and interesting, with each of the main characters being given a suitable backstory that drives their actions. Davidson writes with a confidence and assuredness that will convince you that every line was written with extreme care. One Small Sacrifice is a novel written by a writer at the top of her game.
* I received a complimentary copy of this novel to provide a review.
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