Sunday, April 18, 2010

Missing Max-Karen Young

Missing Max
Karen Young
Howard (Simon and Schuster), Jun 15 2010, $14.99
ISBN: 9781416587491

Post Katrina Mardi Gras is a beautiful spectacle. Jane Madison, her young son Max, her teenage stepdaughter Melanie and her friend Christine attend the event. Jane goes off to get refreshments while Christine watches Max. Melanie calls her stepmother to say Max is missing as Christine went to help somebody. Melanie flirted with some boys while, Max and his stroller vanished.

Six months later, no trace of Max has surfaced though the police still follow any lead. The family fails to receive strength from each other; instead they drift apart. Melanie blames herself and deliberately gets pregnant so that she can give the newborn to her stepmom and her dad Kyle . Blaming Jane for leaving their baby for a moment, Kylie moves out of their bedroom. Jane feels guilt not just for the loss of her child, but to what is happening to her family; however, she cannot pull herself together to prevent the collapse. Finally the kidnapper calls to inform them Max is alive. It is also apparent that the perp hates Jane, not Kyle who thought his legal work might be the motive.. Obsessed Jane considers who might detest her enough to abduct Max.

Karen Young writes a thrilling inspirational chiller that grips the audience from the opening abduction and never loosens its hold on readers need to know who and why. Missing Max focuses on how the kidnapped toddler’s family cope with their loss; as each reacts differently to the big hole in their heart yet share in common a deep rooted need for separation and blame. Although a seemingly implausible finale, fans will root for determined Jane to rescue her kids from the monster.

Harriet Klausner

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