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The Space Between: 01/08/20
The Space Between by Dete Meserve is about an astronomer coming home from a conference to find her husband missing, presumed kidnapped. She has to do everything she can to find him while planted evidence makes her look responsible for his disappearance.
The book is set in Los Angeles and the San Gabriel Valley. Sarah, her missing husband, and their near-do-well son, Zack, live in Bel Air and she commutes every day to Pasadena. Right there I have questions — how did they afford the house and why isn't her commute worse given the distance and the lack of major freeways near her home. Or maybe I'm still traumatized from my two years of commuting to and from UCLA when I was living in Pasadena.
The evidence against Sarah include a million dollar deposit, a deleted security camera record, an alarm that wasn't set, and a loaded Glock she's never seen before. Then to make things more complicated, there's evidence her husband may have killed a woman he was seen with during a business trip to New York.
The mystery itself was along the lines of an elaborate Columbo plot without the benefit of seeing the crime committed. Given the husband is missing and the murder victim is someone Sarah has never met, there's not the emotional draw like the cozies I regularly read would have.
The set up for the actual murder plot — the woman in New York — took longer to set up than it needed to. There's a lot of time spent with back story about Sarah's relationship with her husband and the trouble they've been having with their son.
The setting also isn't used to its full potential. Sarah's place of employment ends up being a made up one, named for Carnegie — which brings to mind turn of the last century libraries, not modern day science labs. If Pasadena is key to the plot, why not make her employer either JPL or Caltech?
Comment #1: Wednesday, January 08, 2020 at 01:25:31
Sounds like a bit of a miss, thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Comment #2: Monday, January 13, 2020 at 23:25:00
It was okay but not great.