Iris Johansen, suspense writer extraordinaire, never disappoints. While some authors falter in a book or two, she never does. This year, fans of the mystery writer will be treated to a mind-boggling trilogy, the first of which is Eve, to be followed by Quinn in July and Bonnie in October.
Long-time fans of the Eve Duncan series know that the forensic sculptor has been obsessed with finding out who killed her young daughter Bonnie. Eve wants to know for sure who killed Bonnie and if at all possible to bring the child’s remains home to bury. It was Bonnie’s disappearance that put Duncan on the path of rebuilding skulls for the FBI and individuals who approached her personally. Eve’s sculptures have made it possible for many to learn what happened to their loved ones. But, while she has been able to help so many others, Eve has been unable to find her daughter.
In Eve, for the first time we get to delve into her past. We see her at sixteen, living in the projects with a drug addicted mother. We follow along as she meets John Gallo and enters into a hot and heavy affair with him just weeks before he is due to enter the Army. Neither Gallo nor Eve wish to commit to a long-distance, long-term relationship. John has already gone when Eve realizes she is pregnant. Two things come out of the pregnancy: Eve’s mother, Sandra, comes out of her drug-addicted daze and steps up to the plate to support her daughter (for the first time); and of course, Bonnie, the great love of Eve’s life.
We learn of the hard times that John Gallo suffered at the hands of the military and the CIA. In spite of his violent nature and hardness, it is impossible to dislike John Gallo. One has to sympathize with the horror he went though while a prisoner in North Korea and with how he was treated by our intelligence agencies upon his escape.
At the core of the novel is Eve’s desperation to find Bonnie. Did John Gallo kill their daughter in a black-out rage? Will Eve and her long-time lover Joe survive the resulting confrontation with Gallo and other adversaries?
Johansen answers a lot of questions about Eve’s past in this book but leaves us very much on tenderhooks about the future. I can’t wait for Quinn and Bonnie. I’ve always believed that Bonnie is alive. I guess I will finally get my answer in October.
This is just simply a book you will want to stay up all night reading.