Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Here and Gone by Haylen Beck

2.5 Stars

This one is set to disappear from the ol’ Kindle any second now, so I better puke something up real quick.

Here and Gone begins with Audra driving cross-country with her two young children in order to start a new life in California, far away from her controlling ex. When Audra gets pulled over by a local Barney Fife in the middle of BFE, her first concern is that she’s been reported for kidnapping. Her worries are put to rest when the trooper explains he was simply concerned with the way the car was riding due to being overloaded. When he starts helping redistribute the weight and discovers a “good-sized baggie half full of dried green leaves” – leaving Audra stating . . .

The local yokel is having none of that B.S., however, and pulls Audra in for questioning. Once she finally gets released on her own recognizance, Audra’s only concern is comforting her children. But when she asks if she can collect them and go, the response is . . . .

“What children?”

It then becomes a race against time, as well as a battle amongst the court of public opinion led by a reporter who will be familiar to many . . . .

For Audra to find the kids before it’s too late.

So obviously this isn’t a real fresh plot. If you like stories like these, you’ll probably like this just fine. I appreciated knowing who the bad guy is right away and a dual narrative that kept me in the loop of what was happening to all of the main players. “Knife Boy” could be the star in one of the scientific journals I’m sometimes fond of reading and I’d want to make lots of science with him, and the dude in the cameo referenced in Shelby’s review was a delight. Speaking of Shelby – I’m counting down to when she makes her appearance in order to tell me I read this wrong. I’m not scurrrrred, though, because . . . .

The main problem I had with Here and Gone was Audra. She was a real turdburger of a human. Obviously I didn’t want her children to die, but I was pretty much A-Okay with her husband or ex-mother-in-law taking them away from her. 2.5 Stars because in a book like this, it’s pretty much necessary for me to like the MC and not want to punch her in the throat.

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