Wednesday, February 23, 2022

The Night Shift

The Night Shift by Alex Finlay
3/1/22; 320 pages
Minotaur Books

The Night Shift by Alex Finlay is a very highly recommended spellbinding thriller following two murder cases fifteen years apart.

On New Year's Eve evening in 1999 four teenage girls are working at Blockbuster Video in Linden, New Jersey. All four are attacked, along with the manager, but only one girl survived. A boyfriend of one of the girl's is the main suspect, but he vanished and hasn't been found since. Fifteen years later, four teenage girls are attacked at the Linden ice cream parlor and, again, only one girl survives. Ella, a therapist, is called in to talk to the survivor of the ice cream shop attack, Jesse Duvall. Ella is the survivor of the Blockbuster attack and Jesse has a keen interest in that unsolved case. Called in to help police with the investigation is FBI agent Sarah Keller, who is 8 1/2 months pregnant with twins. She is assisted by temporary partner Atticus Singh.

The engrossing, riveting narrative unfolds through the points-of-view of Ella, Sarah Keller, and Chris, an assistant prosecutor who actually has a hidden tie to the Blockbuster case. Surrounding their accounts are a host of supporting characters who have some association with the cases and add depth and intrigue to the plot. It becomes clear that solving the current murder investigation may require a closer look at the earlier case. The characters are wonderfully written and resemble real people with all their fears, failings, and foibles. Even the depictions of minor characters feel authentic.

The Night Shift is truly an unputdownable novel with fantastic writing. I was so looking forward to this novel and am so pleased that it met all my lofty expectations. The plot is gripping and compelling and held my rapt attention throughout. There are twists as new information is uncovered and the investigations follow logical developments. The suspense and tension continue to increase as more information is revealed until the explosive ending. This novel has it all, suspense, memorable characters, and a compelling story line.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Minotaur Books.

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