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Missing Daughter, Shattered Family by Liz…

Missing Daughter, Shattered Family

by Liz Strange

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Missing Daughter, Shattered Family was an interesting mystery novel. David was a likable guy and a good detective. I liked that he really cared about people. Though I often wished he had more backup whenever his investigation led him into dangerous situations...
I'm looking forward to reading the second book in the series. ( )
  Nightcolors | Apr 8, 2013 |
I went from the high octane action novel The Two Deaths of Daniel Hayes into the more laid back classic P.I. novel, Missing Daughter, Shattered Family. David Lloyd is a former police officer turned private investigator who is hired to find the missing daughter of a prominent Toronto family. The young woman has not contacted her family in months, something highly unusual for her. Her history of drug abuse and mental illness make it all too easy to assume she either took off or possibly overdosed. As the case unfolds, David finds that not all the facts are lining up--nor are all the people he is interviewing being completely honest with him. The closer he gets to the truth, the more feathers he ruffles, and the more someone turns to violence to warn him away.

Missing Daughter, Shattered Family was refreshing in its old school detective approach. David does a lot of leg work, interviewing friends and family of the missing woman. The novel starts out slow admittedly, but it didn't take long for me to be hooked in, wondering what the author had in store for me--and her characters.

David is a likeable guy. He has all the makings of a good detective. He is ethical and diligent. He isn't easily intimidated and he is ever persistent. He looks beyond the words spoken to him and seems to be a good judge of character. He knows how to turn on the charm and use it to his advantage.

David's past comes back to haunt him as he works on the case and he comes face to face with the police officer who got him kicked off the force. Beaten severely, resulting in a knee injury and hearing loss, as a result of being gay, David had no choice but to step down from his position on the police force. He knows the men who beat him were fellow police officers, but unfortunately he has no proof. Memories from that incident come flooding back and David struggles to deal with his past as well as search for the missing girl. The author could have taken this in several different directions, but I like how it was kept in the background. It clearly was a significant and horrific event in the protagonist's life, shaping who David had become, but it never overshadowed the main story line.

On the home front, David is dealing with personal issues as well. His long time partner, Jamie, has still not come out to his family and coworkers. This has created some tension between the two men, which finally comes to a head. I really got a feel for how both men must have felt and my heart went out to Jamie.

The personal story line played nicely into the main plot--giving it a nice balance. As with any mystery, such a side story makes the characters more real in the reader's mind. It helps paint a fuller picture of the character as a human being. And it did for me in this case.

As an aside, kudos for the author for throwing in the paperwork! How often do you see the protagonist in a mystery actually complete any of the required paperwork? It was realistic touches like this that made me especially appreciate the novel.

The mystery was at times predictable and formulaic, but I enjoyed getting to know David and following him along on his investigation. Overall, I enjoyed Missing Daughter, Shattered Family. I wouldn't have heard of this novel had it not been for its being short-listed for an Independent Literary Award, and so am grateful to have had the opportunity to read it. ( )
  LiteraryFeline | May 17, 2012 |
Missing Daughter, Shattered Family – David Lloyd Investigations Book #1
Author: Liz Strange

When a brutal homophobic attack ended David Lloyd's career as a police officer, his life was changed forever. Five years later David is running his own private detective agency, where a missing person's case comes to his attention. Digging into the circumstances of her disappearance forces David to realize he has not dealt with what happened to him, and that he can no loner deal with his long-time partner's fear of being honest about their relationship.

Solving the case might not only bring peace to a shattered family, but could finally put David's own demons to rest.

Our Review [by Michelle L. Olson – LITERAL ADDICTION’s Pack Alpha]:
I’m a big fan of Liz’s work and was excited to read this as it’s not her ‘usual’, or what I’ve come to equate with her usual anyway.
I was pleasantly surprised and am definitely looking forward to the next installment of this series – the lady can write a killer mystery! :)
Missing Daughter, Shattered Family is not a super fast paced, majorly action packed read, but it’s steady and gripping, & holds your interest the entire way through. It’s perfectly layered and fabulously enjoyable.
You build an affinity for the characters from the get-go, and their real-life struggles lead to the story and pull you in even more.
The plot is deep and intriguing and keeps you guessing up until the very last where the true ‘bad guys’ are thoroughly revealed.
While this is definitely a mystery, there is some sweet and true to life romance between the hero and his partner. It is a m/m romance, but that should not dissuade anyone from reading it. Even if you think you wouldn’t enjoy a m/m romance, as I said, the book is all about the mystery and the romance that is introduced just leads to the believability of the lead characters and their role in the solving of said mystery.
LITERAL ADDICTION gives Missing Daughter, Shattered Family 4 Skulls and would recommend it to all Mystery aficionados. I’m really looking forward to book #2 of the series and can’t wait to see what’s in store for David & Jamie and the new friends they make along the way. If I were to sum up this book, it’s a wonderfully written mystery with a ton of heart.
  LITERALADDICTION | Feb 24, 2012 |
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Private Detective David Lloyd, a gay, former policeman, takes on a missing persons case in Toronto, Ontario and deals with issues from his past.

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