When All the Girls Have Gone by Jayne Ann Krentz (Amazon link)
Description: When Charlotte Sawyer is unable to contact her step-sister, Jocelyn, to tell her that one her closest friends was found dead, she discovers that Jocelyn has vanished.
Beautiful, brilliant—and reckless—Jocelyn has gone off the grid before, but never like this. In a desperate effort to find her, Charlotte joins forces with Max Cutler, a struggling PI who recently moved to Seattle after his previous career as a criminal profiler went down in flames—literally. Burned out, divorced and almost broke, Max needs the job.
After surviving a near-fatal attack, Charlotte and Max turn to Jocelyn's closest friends, women in a Seattle-based online investment club, for answers. But what they find is chilling…
When her uneasy alliance with Max turns into a full-blown affair, Charlotte has no choice but to trust him with her life. For the shadows of Jocelyn's past are threatening to consume her—and anyone else who gets in their way.
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Why I Picked This Book: I always enjoy a Jayne Ann Kretnz book and this one looked intriguing!
My Impression: One of the good things about a Jayne Ann Krentz book is that I always know what I'm going to be getting. It's going to be a good story with lots of suspense and a bit of romance. It's not necessarily the kind of mystery that will hold up under scrutiny after I've finished it but it's always one that will keep me reading to find out what happens next. This book did not disappoint on any of these levels.
Let's start with the characters. I liked Charlotte right away. She's tougher than people give her credit for - especially her world weary stepsister Jocelyn - but does struggle with standing up for herself. She and Jocelyn are very clsoe but at times does feel herself rebelling about how Jocelyn tries to take care of her and protect her. She's also intelligent, incredibly compassionate, and cool headed when needed. No one questions how tough Max Cutler is. A seasoned profiler tirned PI he has his own baggage to work out but doesn't have a chip on his shoulder about and truly wants to do the right thing. The other characters aren't particularly flehsed out but are easy to keep track of who is who.
The mystery is interesting if somewhat predictable with an occasional twist and turn. At times I felt like it got overshadowed by the romance aspect but it never got lost completely. I liked how Max and Charlotte worked together and it was interesting to see how the investigation worked. I really liked that he treated her like a partner and listened to her suggestions even though she was a novice when it came to crime. While they don't quite fall into insta-love category they do have a very quick connection but I didn't find that particularly unrealistic since they suited each other so well. I loved the way all the different subplots wrapped up and would really love to see another book with one of Max's brothers as the main character. They're an interesting read.
While the focus on the personal kept this from being super suspenseful it was still fast paced and I enjoyed it. If you're looking for a light entertaining read to keep your mind off the incoming holiday craziness this one would be a great choice!
- side note: while there are some darker subjects covered (abuse and sexual assualt) they weren't described in particular graphic detail. I wouldn't call this a cozy but it's not a double check your locks kind of book either.
Would I Read More of this Series/Author?: Absolutely! These are always fun reads if not entirely perfect.
Would I Recommend this Book?: If you enjoy romantic suspense this is a fun book!