A wow of a book! Really, just superb. Something of a mystery, something of a thriller lite, something of a love story without all the gooey smoochie stuff, a little bit of blood, a LOT of action, and an ending that we can smell coming but love anyway.
The young, 2-month pregnant wife of a very wealthy man mysteriously disappears 7 years ago. Not a trace is found, ever, even of her car. The police investigation turns up nothing, the man spends a fortune on private investigators looking for her, to no avail, and finally, the nice lady detective assigned to the case is ordered to give it up when it becomes apparent that there is absolutely nothing to go on.
Then one day, on a flight back to Texas from New York, the maybe-widower, Philip Lewellan, sees a brochure for a small art gallery (or was it a museum — dunno, I forget) in the hands of his young seatmate, and asks to look it at. It displays a photo of a portrait of a woman who is a dead ringer for his disappeared wife, and a child who would be just about the right age of his own. OMG!!!!! His wife is still alive, and strangely enough, being painted by some artist? Que extraño, no? Hmmmmm.
He gets to the Texas airport, turns right around and flies back to NYC to go to that institution to view the portrait for himself. Dang! It IS her, complete with a set of jewelry he gave to her right before she disappeared.
He immediately contacts the nice lady detective from the case in Texas, and begs her to reopen the case, or at least, help him investigate this, because now he has proof the wife is still alive and he has a daughter!
The nice lady detective, who could never get this case out of her mind, agrees, and now the game is on, with twists, turns, and lots of deviousness, all fun for us readers.
Beautifully written, cleverly plotted, nicely paced. What can I say? I loved it.
EXCEPT: I hate the cover. It is an extraordinarily ugly cover, cheesy, no class, just awful. This is a classy book and deserves a much classier cover to indicate the professionalism inside. One of these days I will post my thoughts on Covers, You CAN Tell a Book By. A cover is our first signal as to the genre, style and character of the book. This one does not do it justice, not by a long shot.
Great book. Go read it, I assure you, it will truly tickle your toenails.