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  • So Impressive!

    Without a Trace, the 7th novel in the Newcastle based detective DCI Kate Daniels series, is immensely good. The descriptions of the Newcastle and surrounding areas were one of the aspects of the series that initially attracted me, as it's close to where I live and grew up. Flight 0113 from London to New York has gone down over the sea, but nobody is quite sure what has happened. As Kate Daniels grasps that the love of her life, Jo Soulsby, was booked on the flight, so, regardless of the consequences, she hot-tails it down to London and manoeuvres her way onto the investigation, which soon takes unimaginable turns. Without a Trace is an excellent, suspenseful police procedural that made my heart race. This wonderful piece of writing is action-packed, creating a tense, anticipatory buzz that pulsates throughout. Just as I was recovering from one reveal, another came along and I would say that the dynamics are some of the greatest I've ever read. Not only was the plot superb and perfectly executed, but also the characters were beautifully drawn. This novel had everything a good thriller should have. It was all extremely authentic with police procedures portrayed with realism and belief and I really appreciated the attention to the finer details. In this 7th instalment, Mari Hannah has woven a complex, first-rate and sophisticated thriller - it held my attention from the first page to the last. Highly recommended and a truly worthwhile read. I received a complimentary digital copy of this novel, at my request, from Orion Publishing Group via NetGalley and this review is my unbiased opinion.

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  • I thoroughly enjoyed this book

    Without a Trace is the seventh book in the DCI Kate Daniels series by Mari Hannah. I haven’t read any of the previous books in the series, in fact, I haven’t read any books by Ms. Hannah before. The plot was one that could be read as a standalone, though I don’t know whether not having a previous encounter with Jo made me have no feelings towards the fact that she was missing. Essentially flight 0113 – Boeing 777 Heathrow to JFK has vanished mid-flight, over the Atlantic ocean. Onboard are 302 passengers possibly including DCI Kate Daniels recently ex-girlfriend (a couple of days previously) and criminal profiler Jo, who had booked a ticket on the flight but Kate is convinced she wasn’t on it. I found the plot to be more focused on DCI Kate Daniels than on the actual events of a missing plane. She was only initially concerned with whether Jo was on the flight and finding evidence that she wasn’t onboard, the fact that there were another 301 passengers, plus the crew didn’t really seem to bother her, nor the reasons for the disappearance which I found a little strange. However, grief makes people do strange things and behave in ways they wouldn’t normally. There are a few twists in the book and it took some turns I wasn’t expecting, so expect some misdirection’s, I also wasn’t expecting the reason for the missing plane to be what it was or how deadly the chase to find the truth would become. It certainly kept me on my toes, especially from about halfway through. The storyline was different from what I was expecting but it was still enjoyable. I couldn’t warm to Kate as she was quite dismissive of people and happy to use them to her advantage, she was hot-headed and it was her way or no way, but again I come back to my grief quote above. Having not read the previous books I can’t say if she is usually like this. Though people are not all perfect and some are just like Kate. I love a good police procedural thriller and I thoroughly enjoyed this one. I raced through it and read it in just two sittings. Whilst not all parts were fast-paced, a high portion of the book was. Plus the short chapters help heighten the tension.

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  • Without A Trace - Absolutely brilliant story

    DCI Kate Daniels and DS Hank Gormley had driven to Heathrow after hearing the news about flight 0113 crashing, Jo was possibly on that flight and Kate needed to know for sure. She wanted in on the investigation although it was outside her jurisdiction. It was being handled by the Met Police Casualty Bureau, FBI and Homeland Security in New York, they needed to know why the plane just disappeared. When bluffing didn’t work, Kate went to her boss, Superintendent Bright. He says no but she has a feeling that Jo may not have been on that plane and she wanted to investigate to make sure, that way she knew it would be done right. She got her team checking movements on Jo’s mobile phone signal, signs if her bank account had been used etc. Meanwhile, she and Hank went to prove that Jo did get on the plane and whilst doing this she received a call, Bright had got them in the Casualty Bureau. Also, they learned two ladies didn’t board the plane so that needed looking into. Then Kate remembered her friend Rob Clark that worked for the Air Accidents Investigation Branch, he might be able to help too. Rob went one better, Kate managed to get a job working undercover in the luggage hold while Hank could interview the workers who loaded the suitcases onto plane 0113 in his capacity as a police officer. Kate was to keep an eye out for any suspicious characters or activity then mention it to Hank and her handler in Homeland Security, then take it from there. Does Kate find anything useful in her undercover role? Was Jo on the plane? Does Kate go rogue like she usually does? This was a brilliant read, a real roller coaster once Kate got her investigation going. Really well written and so well researched, everything just gelled together for me. Made me realise how much I had missed reading this series! Just love these characters and how they bond with each other.

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