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    Review of LONG TIME GONE by J. A. Jance (see her website)


    William Morrow, August 2005

    Fifty years earlier, a young girl had witnessed a murder. Now, with the help of hypnotheropy, the nun is remembering the death--and she comes to J. P. (Beau) Beaumont for help, along with enough political clout to have him pulled off everyday assignments and told to investigate this long-cold case. Which might be just as well, because Beau's best friend is accused of murdering his ex-wife and Beau would be willing to break all of the rules to help his friend.

    Not long after Beau begins investigating the long-forgotten case, the deaths start. Beau would have guessed that the murderers would be ancient or dead, but something about this case is terribly alive--and Beau has turned over one stone too many. But keeping his focus on the nun's cold case is tough for Beau and he soon also involves himself with his friend--and the friend's teenage daughter who might know more than she's letting on.

    Author J. A. Jance (see more reviews of novels by Jance) starts strong with a thoughtful and psychological look into Beau's world, the problems he's dealing with, and the city of Seattle. As the murders start to pile up, so does the action--with Beau breaking the rules and putting himself and those around him in danger.

    I had some problems with Beau's extreme judgment and condemnation of people based on appearance. The story certainly would have been more clever if Beau's initial assessment had been mistaken at least some of the time. Instead, Jance took the easy way out, which weakened the story for me. Still, Jance's strong wordcrafting, the growing relationship between Beau and Mel, and the power of the repressed memory story definitely made LONG TIME GONE a mystery worth reading.

    Three Stars

    Reviewed 6/04/05

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