Wednesday, September 21, 2022

The Stolen Hours by Allen Eskens

 
First Line: Lila Nash counted her steps as she walked from the kitchen to the bathroom of her apartment.
 
It's been a long, difficult road, but Lila Nash is on the brink of landing her dream job as a prosecutor for Hennepin County, Minnesota. There are just two obstacles in her way: a vindictive boss who's made it his job to force her to quit, and a case with strong ties to Lila's past and the secret she's been hiding for eight lonely years.

Police are convinced that professional photographer Gavin Spencer is responsible for assaulting a Minneapolis woman and then dumping her body in the Mississippi River to drown. Miraculously, the woman survived, and police want to work fast to bring the man to justice. But there's just one problem: no evidence. It's almost as though Gavin Spencer saw what was coming and went to extraordinary lengths to erase every tiny detail that would tie him to the crime.

Lila Nash wants to see Spencer put behind bars for the rest of his life, especially when his name comes up in possible connections to crimes committed in the past, including the attack on Lila that tore her life apart. Lila and the police are going to have to give it everything they've got because the clock is ticking.
 
~
 
As I listened to The Stolen Hours unfold, I was blown away by Allen Eskens' meticulous precision in putting this story together. The excellent misdirection he employed to lead me straight down the garden path to the compost pile. The shifting points of view that gave me so much insight into each character. The way Gavin Spencer saying, "All you had to do was be nice!" made my blood run cold. The way Eskens made me wonder how Lila Nash was going to succeed despite her awful boss.

Allen Eskens has never ever disappointed me with any of his books that I've read. He has an incredible gift for the one-two punch: a fantastic story paired with characters with whom I become emotionally invested. The Stolen Hours is no exception. I wanted Gavin Spencer to learn that he wasn't as smart as he thought he was-- and I wanted Lila Nash to be the person to prove it to him. This book, about victims and the long road to healing and forgiveness that they must travel, is an intellectual and emotional banquet.
 
The Stolen Hours by Allen Eskens
Narrated by MacLeod Andrews, Christine Laken, and Tina Huang.
ASIN: B09DDCXT32
Mulholland Books © 2021
Audiobook. 10 hours 1 minute.
 
Standalone Legal Thriller
Rating: A+
Source: Purchased from Audible.

19 comments:

  1. I am so glad to see that you gave this book your top rating. I read one book by Eskens, Nothing So Dangerous, and immediately liked his writing and knew this opinion would hold in future books. I have it on library audiobook hold and I will prioritize it.

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    1. Have you started listening to audiobooks?

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    2. I listened to one: Rhode Island Red. But it was full of yelling and gunshots and I was trying to be calm before bed. I have four on hold, but have to find time to hear them. This book is one of them.
      If it's before bedtime, I have to relax, no fights or murders in audio. So planning is required. I think I still like the printed word better, but I will try more audio books.

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    3. Wow-- I've never listened to an audiobook that has sound effects like gunshots! I wouldn't be too crazy about that either.

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  2. This does sound like a tense, taut novel, and that's the sort of book that keeps readers listening/turning/swiping pages. Lila sounds like a strong female protagonist, too, which is always a plus in my book, as is the setting. All that and good misdirection, too? No wonder you liked this as much as you did.

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    1. Lila is the best combination of vulnerable and strong.

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  3. I've had Allen Eskens on my TBR for a long time. Must get to reading his books!

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  4. I've enjoyed every book of his that I have read and I hope to add this one to that list.

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    1. You probably will, Dorothy. It's good to hear that you've enjoyed his books, too.

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  5. Allen Eskens is an author I was not familiar with before reading this review. It sounds like I need to add his books to my TBR!

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    1. You're going to get a very enthusiastic YES! from me.

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    2. Me, too, but I cried while reading Nothing So Dangerous. Eskens writes about character readers care about.

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  6. I have had another one of his on my list for a while now. Clearly he should have a higher priority!

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  7. Thank you for the review. I've not read anything by this author but will be looking out for books

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    1. They are very good books, Mystica. I hope you can find them.

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