Saturday, October 20, 2012

Missing Rebecca by John Worsley Simpson (Review, Guest Blog and Giveaway!)

Suspense, Thriller


Kindle, Create Space

Release Date:
May 2012

Liam Peters falls in love and marries Rebecca Hancock after a whirlwind romance. Only a couple of months after their marriage, Rebecca is kidnapped from a shopping mall. Liam does everything in his power to find her, but the police are less than helpful.

As Liam desperately searches for his wife, he discovers she might not be the innocent woman he thought. Perhaps there was a reason for their quick romance and marriage which had nothing to do with love. Liam doesn’t want to believe it, but he quickly realizes he was played for a fool.

As he does his own investigation, he discovers his wife was mixed up in quite a few illegal activies. His own life hangs in the balance as he comes up against the Russian mob, corrupt pharmaceutical people, and US Marshals. As Liam travels across the country to find his wife, readers will be on a rollercoaster themselves as they try to figure out the bad guys from the good guys.

The premise of this story is captivating and it has the potential for a great storyline, but I felt as if I needed more. I wanted to know the characters better than I did. There were a few slow parts in the middle of the book, but I thought it got off to a great start and had a great end.

I loved that the author kept giving us twists and turns to the point that the readers have no clue which characters to trust. We needed a score card to keep this straight, which I found fun. Missing Rebecca is a quick read and suspense lovers will enjoy this one.

FTC Disclosure: The Partners in Crime Blog Tour provided me with a copy of this book to review. This did not influence my thoughts and opinions in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.

For reading challenge:

E-Book Reading Challenge


There are two kinds of crime-fiction writers and readers: those who play fast and loose with reality and those for whom "getting it right" is of great importance. I am of the latter type. The former, in my view, are lazy, cheap sluts who deceive and cheat readers, many of whom are, unfortunately, willing dupes.

Those readers who are willing to be abused in this way do a disservice to the notion of "reader." It's like the difference in music between, say, classical, opera, jazz, Broadway musicals, or other quality genres and the lowest of the lowest of the lowest of the low: rap, which is not only not music, it's no more than some idiot babbling nonsense that would have been more poetic and meaningful had he read out the Peoria, Ill., Yellow Pages with a stammer.

Now, you can successfully write like that--Dan Brown is a great example--and be a terrific success because there are no quality controls any more. Back to the music analogy: at one time, 40 years ago, all popular music was of a high calibre. Its rendition required years of training and practice. The public loved the result. Today, all kinds of absolute garbage is admired, and makes a lot of money for its producers. What's happened? Did the public lose its ability to discern good from bad music? No, the public never had any real taste. What's happened is that the standards are no longer set by professionals (I mean really professional, not somebody who gets paid for making a noise), but instead are determined by marketers responding to the grunts of the rabble, who are quite happy with the crap with which they are assailed.) At one time, a twdit who could twang a guitar wouldn't be allowed to clean the crap from the bottom of the boots of a real musician, and so the public never heard the shoeshiner's cacophonous assault on the ears and the brain. Today, those scumbags--the marketers and the "artists"-- set the "standard."

After that long digression, back to literature, and in an incredibly convoluted route , back to research. What I'm trying to say in this circumlocutionary effort is that honest writers get things right, which, in most genres, requires little in the way of research. In crime fiction, however, getting it right means a considerable amount of research. In fact, I would guess that, on average, every two or three pages would produce questions on which I would have to conduct research to answer. I don't think there is any other form of fiction, except science fiction, that demands that kind of questioning, that kind of research, which can be anything from a correct title from the Internet to a personal interview of a cop, or a nurse, or a doctor, or an ex-convict.


JOHN WORSLEY SIMPSON is a crime-fiction writer. John was born in Bradford, Yorkshire, England, emigrated to Canada at the age of four and grew up in Toronto, He has been a reporter and editor in major newspapers and news services in North America, England and Ireland. He is married and lives in Newmarket, Ontario.

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PURCHASE LINKS: AMAZON  and Barnes & Noble


“Okay.” The detective moved the computer mouse on the table and the screen lit up. He clicked on a folder and a video player opened; another click and the video began to play. The first scene was inside one of the mall’s entrances. In a moment, Liam and Rebecca entered the frame from the bottom of the screen, their backs to the camera.

“Is that you and your wife?” Welburn asked.

“It is, yes. It was a cold day, like today, so Rebecca wore her red, quilted ski jacket. I wore my pea coat and watch cap—hello, sailor,” Peters said, grinning vacuously, and immediately felt stupid.

“Sure. And right away you split up.”

“Rebecca likes to shop alone, which is great. As men, you must appreciate that.”

The detectives exchanged a glance and then nodded politely.

They ran the video for about an hour, various cameras picking up Rebecca in her bright red coat and ink-black hair. One scene showed Rebecca heading past the camera toward the mall exit, carrying a Lord & Taylor bag. The next scene showed Peters carrying a huge Hugo Boss bag, passing Rebecca as she re-entered the mall empty handed. He waved to her as he passed, and she turned down a side corridor that led to the restrooms.

“I took the jacket and pants I’d bought out to the car,” Peters explained. “Rebecca had a couple of outfits in her bag. She left them in the car, too. I found them later.”

Almost instantly, because of the truncating of the video by the technician, a man wearing a long, black overcoat, its collar turned up, and a sloping-brim, Irish-style, tweed hat appeared from the bottom of the screen, his back to the camera, as if he had just entered the mall. He was carrying a duffel bag. His shoulders were hunched and he walked with long, quick strides, so that he was around the corner and in the restroom corridor in a few seconds.

Welburn paused the video.

“Let me explain. I’ve watched the video before, a few times. The original showed this corner of the hall for some time. There is an emergency exit at the end of the corridor to the restrooms, and there are a couple of utility rooms. If the exit door had been opened, an alarm would have sounded, and a signal flashed in the security room. It wasn’t opened. There’s no camera in the restroom hallway, by the way. It’s only a short hall, fully visible from the main hall. Anyway, you’ll see when I start the video again that two people—the guy in the long coat—and a woman in a long coat and a wide scarf covering her hair and most of her face come out of the restroom hallway. The guy is holding the woman’s elbow. Okay, watch.”

As soon as the detective restarted the video, the couple he had described came hurrying around the corner in the direction of the camera. The hat and collar of the man concealed his face, as did the woman’s scarf cover hers. He seemed almost to be pushing her. He wasn’t carrying the duffel bag.

“Now, the entire rest of the video shows no one in a red ski jacket, or even anyone roughly resembling your wife come out of that corridor, or from straight down the hall.”

“That must have been her.”

“With the long-overcoat guy? Yeah we think so. The height looks about right, for instance. And—I’m sorry about this, but we checked with the lost-and-found at the mall, and they had a red ski jacket that looks exactly like the one your wife was wearing. It was found in the ladies washroom in the hallway we’re looking at. And the duffel bag the guy was carrying was in the hallway.”


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  1. I do love a few good twists in a book

  2. It does need a really good plot to pull off a first rate mystery. Glad you liked this one okay

  3. Thank you for sharing your honest thoughts and a great post. Good job!!

  4. This one does sound good, but having slow parts in the middle is something I've dealt with quite a bit lately...and I really hate when that happens!

    I might pick this up at some point, though.


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