Sunday, June 19, 2022

The Lost

The Lost by Jeffrey B. Burton
6/28/22; 288 pages
Minotaur Books
Mace Reid K-9 Mystery #3

The Lost by Jeffrey B. Burton is a highly recommended K-9 mystery/procedural and the third book in the Mace Reid series.

Mace Reid and his human remains detection (HRD) dog, a golden retriever named Vira, are called out to the estate of Kenneth J. Druckman where a home invasion and robbery turned into a kidnapping. His wife and their five-year-old daughter are missing, as well as all of his wife's jewelry. Vira searches for remains and finds his wife's body, but returns back to the house, leading Mace and Chicago police detective Kippy Gimm, to suspect that Druckman had something to do with the murder. Now the search is on for his daughter and the truth behind the purported home invasion and robbery.

It is always a pleasure to read Burton's K-9 novels. If you love mysteries and dogs this is a series for you. As the third book in the series featuring Mace Reid and his pack of dogs, The Lost follows The Finders (2020) and The Keepers (2021). Although it is not necessary to read the first two books in order to enjoy The Lost, you will likely want to do so after reading it. This is an entertaining and exciting case where the tension is often softened by Mace's humor and observations.

The excellent writing helps create tension and suspense while holding your interest with a fast pace and intricate plot. This time the complex plot involves billionaires scheming, deceit, kidnapping, murder, stolen jewels, and more. After a startling opening chapter you will have to keep reading to see how it all fits into the overall plot. I liked the chapters going back in time following the events that led up to the kidnapping. Once the two story lines merge the tension is palpable and the action really takes off. This has consistently been a good series.

At this point Mace is a fully realized likeable character with flaws and strengths. He continues to have a nice balance of analytical abilities and irreverent humor, and even a good dose of self-deprecating humor as he talks to his pack. You will root for him, his dogs, and for Kippy Gimm. They are all believable characters. The dogs - Vira, Sue, the German Shepard, and collies Maggie May and Delta Dawn and blood hound Bill (Billie Boy) - are all characters too and you'll see their individual personalities.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Minotaur Books via NetGalley.

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