Review copy was received from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Lost Hours by Paige Shelton
Series: Alaska Wild Mysteries #5
Published by St. Martin's Press on December 5, 2023
Amazon, Audible, Libro.fm, Barnes & Noble, Apple
A year after arriving in Benedict, Beth Rivers is feeling very at home in Alaska, even as outsiders are starting to return to enjoy the brief summer perfection. Beth feels like she’s finally let go of most of her demons. She’s even found her father, Eddy Rivers—or, rather, he found her—and she's trying to find the middle ground between anger and forgiveness.
One sunny July day, Beth boards a tourist ship to see the glaciers, the main reason visitors venture to the area, and something Beth hasn’t attempted until now. But when the captain has to navigate to an island, a bloodied woman is found standing on the shore, waving for help. When she’s brought aboard, she claims she was kidnapped from her home in Juneau three days earlier, and that a bear on the island killed her captor. She, however, is unharmed.
The woman, Sadie, finds a sympathetic ear in Beth. She tells her that she’s been in Juneau under witness protection, and that the Juneau police don’t like her. When another kidnapping occurs, Beth and police chief Gril can’t help but think the two cases are interwoven, though the clues to solving them will be harder to unravel.
I am well into the Alaska Wild Mysteries. I would read the series in order as both the mystery plot arc and the personal relationships grow throughout the series. Beth came to Alaska to hide from a stalker. She doesn’t remember everything about her abduction. She initially didn’t tell people and didn’t know who to trust. Now that her stalker has been caught she is feeling a bit better. She has also gotten to know and become friends with more people in this small town.
Lost Hours has plenty of mystery: a dead body, an abducted woman, and a missing teenage girl. Beth throws herself into investigating and danger. She has good reasoning and strategy to solve things but no defensive skills against criminals and continues to stupidly endanger herself. It’s unrealistic how law enforcement lets her do it.
We see more of Beth’s relationship with Tex, and her uncertainty if she will stay here or go back to Missouri. A new resident is her long lost father, Eddy. Beth doesn’t trust him but she can’t help but want to know him better.
Of course, Beth figures things out, working well with law enforcement. Her mother is MIA. The end has a bit of a cliffhanger which gives us an idea of the theme of the next book.
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