Never Wave Goodbye
Touchstone (Simon and Schuster), Jun 1 2010, $24.99
Feeling sad but proud that her nine years old daughter Sarah is going to spend two weeks at sleep away camp with her best friend Linda, the distraught mom pays little attention to the vehicle or driver picking up her child. Lena waves goodbye to Sarah and goes inside their home pondering how to get her marriage to David back on track. Soon a second van arrives to pick up Sarah.
By the time the confusion is cleared up, Sarah, Linda and two boys Tommy and Franklin are the victims of a kidnapping. The FBI leads the investigation, but has little to go on. The kidnappers demand one million.
In the woods, one abductor Mr. Everett is with the four frightened kids until he has an accident after a chance encounter with a hiker. The kids are alone struggling to survive. Sarah becomes the de facto leaders of the quartet
Never Wave Goodbye is a high octane suspense wrapped around several related (by the abductions) family dramas. Doug Magee gets inside the hearts and souls of the children and their parents; each sharing in common a fear they will not see one another ever again. Although the clues are obvious so that law enforcement seems inane and to a degree the parents (one can claim trepidation and grief for the latter), readers will relish this gut-wrenching human drama.