Friday, September 17, 2021

Book Review - The Stolen Hours; Allen Eskens

The Stolen Hours; Allen Eskens

Mulholland Books - 2021

Lila Nash is a petite, young woman who has made a lot of progress with anxiety issues after she was drugged and attacked when she was eighteen years old. Both therapy and counting rituals have helped her succeed in law school and she now works in a Minnesota prosecutor's office. Her job isn't easy as Frank Dovey has an axe to grind and wants to see her fail. Lila is determined to succeed and when she is reassigned to work under Andi Fitch we see her confidence slowly building.

Gavin Spencer is a creepy, calculated psychopath and photographer. He has a distinct lisp and gets even with any woman who snubs him usually by doing away with the offender.  His most recent victim, Sadie Vauk, survived her attack and was able to identify him and,  the evidence is building against Gavin.  The more the evidence builds, the more Lila recalls similarities between her attack and the way Gavin operates.  This makes Lila more and more determined than ever to see him prosecuted for what he has done.

Without saying too much, I loved the way this story developed slowly, the details are so finely drawn and the pace was pitch-perfect.  The characters were expertly crafted. I especially loved that the women were so strong and determined. I enjoyed this one so much and did not want it to end so I read a few other books in between to make this story last.  The ending was both unexpected and thrilling.

Allen Eskens is a go-to author for for me.  One character, Joe Talbert who has been involved with Lila for six years has appeared in a few earlier offerings but, he played a minor role in this one so I feel this would work perfectly as a standalone novel.   If you haven't read this author previously, do yourself a favor an add him to your list. 

Thanks go to Mulholland Books and NetGalley for allowing me access to the pre-pub eGalley.

Rating - 5/5 stars

29 comments:

  1. I haven't read Eskens, but I'm seeing his name a lot lately. This sounds so good!

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    1. Oh yes, it was a winner. Great characters and great writing.

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  3. I was thinking about listening to this on audio (as I did with The Life We Bury), but after reading your review, I think I'll get it in print. It sounds really good! I still have several of his other books to catch up on, as well. Thanks for the reminding me of this author.

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    1. I listened to last year's book: Nothing More Dangerous on audio and it was very good.

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  4. I read and enjoyed Nothing More Dangerous by this author last year. I had heard that he had a new book and now I will definitely be on the lookout for this one.

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    1. I really liked Nothing More Dangerous as well. I hope you love this one too.

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  5. This one sounds really good, Diane. I also have not read this author's books, but thanks for letting us know that this one might work as a standalone or as a start for his books. I think my new library only has his first book. Might check it out.

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    1. I think you will love his stories Kay. I think The Life We Bury was his first book but not positive.

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  6. I have not read Eskens before, but your review of this latest book makes me want to give him a try. Do you have a favorite out of all his books?

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    1. It's funny, every time I read one of his books I say, "this is my new favorite." LOL ---Nothing More Dangerous--last year's book was very good as well but, honestly, all good.

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    2. That's good to know. I'll have to see what's available at my library. :)

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  7. Diane, I am not familiar with this author but this does sound compelling. Excellent, concise review!
    I hope you've had a good summer. I have been away from blogging for a while.

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    1. Thank you, this was such a good read. I hope you've been good busy and having some fun as well.

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  8. This is a new to me author. This sounds like a good book.

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  9. I've read his first and second novels and enjoyed his writing style. This one looks like a story I would want to read, so thanks for sharing it. Glad to hear it could be a stand-alone in case I don't get to the missing titles in the series first.

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    1. I'm not good about series reads unless I get in early. It's overwhelming when I find an author I like only to learn there re 10+ books that came before the one I liked:)

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  10. Eskens is new to me, but this does sound like a good place to give him a try. I'll see if I can turn up a copy.

    You mention slow-to-develop plot lines in your review. Most people seem to hate those, so I'm glad to hear someone else say out loud that they kind of like that type of pace. That usually means that the author is spending more time developing the characters and on side plots...two things I love them to do.

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    1. Sam, I think there is a big difference in slow-to-develop and slow because of random ramblings and filler text. I love when an author is methodical and slowly develops a setting, storyline and characters. This one was a winner for me. This would be a good one to try or his previous book: Nothing More Dangerous was very good as well.

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  11. I read another of Allen Eskens' books years ago and really liked it. This sounds like a winner too.

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  12. So glad you liked it. I have read or listened to 2 or 3 of Eskens and enjoy them as well. This one sounds particularly good with a female protagonist. The first book remains my favorite ... but perhaps this will be as good?!

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    1. The Life We Bury was excellent, I listened to some of his and liked them a lot - Nothing More Dangerous was an audio that was excellent. This one was the eGalley.

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  13. Oh I remember reading The Life We Bury by him and found it really good. So I guess some of the books are somewhat connected? I need to follow up with this author and I do like the sound of this one a lot.

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    1. This could definitely be a stand-alone read - no need to even know where Joe appeared last.

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  14. I've not heard of this book but it sounds good! Another book onto the wishlist!

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