Cover Image: Unmissing


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Member Reviews

oh my goodness! Minka Kent just dropped one of the most incredible domestic thriller books I have read in a while and she does it in less than 300 pages! I had not heard a lot about this book before I picked it up, but I am so glad I did! This book has such a unique premise that I could not put it down. This book follows the main character who went missing 10 years ago- today she showed up at her husbands door step to see his new wife. There is so much to this story than what meets the eye and the twists were nothing short of incredible!
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I have enjoyed every Minka Kent book I have read including this one! A great story told from each well fleshed out main character's perspective. The story draws you in from the beginning with many surprises along the way. A must read!
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What happens when the dead wife of your husband shows up on your doorstep? Unmissing was a twisty, turny, expected read. From the get go, you know something isn't right when Lydia shows up without calling the police to report her escape from The Monster. But, why? Told from alternating points of view from current wife (Merritt) and former wife (Lydia), this is a suspenseful thriller that will keep you on your toes. Definately recommended.
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Thank you Netgalley for this ARC of Unmissing by Minka Kent.

Luca and Merritt have a lovely life together, their family is growing and their home is safe and loving.  But both of their lives come to a halt when Luca's first wife shows up at their door, but she has been missing and presumed dead after disappearing ten years ago.  Where has Lydia been all of these years?  And what does this mean for the future of Luca and Merritt.

This started somewhat slow, but there were turns so subtle that if you're not paying attention, you'll miss.  And you don't want to miss them because they definitely made me gasp.  This book was never a fast roller coaster, but it still gave me whiplash.
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Unmissing is another fast-paced psychological thriller from author Minka Kent. in which she explores a question that could have myriad answers: What if a man's wife was legally declared dead after disappearing without a trace a decade ago, but suddenly reappears after he has remarried, and started a business and family with a second wife? 

The story begins ten years ago as Lydia, twenty years old, is hiking near Bent Creek, Oregon. Just a few months earlier, they moved to Luca's home town so he could eventually open a restaurant. Lydia is applying to nursing school and they plan to start a family. In her first-person narrative, Lydia gushes, "We're building our dream life one beautiful brick at a time." That dream dies when a man clamps his hand over her mouth and warns her, "Don't scream." She can't get to her backpack containing her phone and GPS tracker. But she left a note for her husband, Luca, back at their house, telling him where she was going. It proves to be of no use.

In the present day, Merritt also relates her own story in the first person, declaring at the outset that she is "a reasonable woman," as she finds a "sunken-eyed, cadaverous figure" at her front door. She immediately recognizes Lydia, her husband's first wife. Lydia wants to speak to Luca, who is out of town attempting to sell their restaurant franchise to a national chain because it is hemorrhaging money and they are on the verge of losing everything they have worked for. They already have a young daughter and Merritt is about to give birth to a son. After Lydia -- is she really Lydia, back from the dead? -- leaves, Merritt makes clear at the outset that Luca is her best friend and soul mate, as well as the father of her children, and "there's nothing I wouldn't do to keep them safe -- or to keep us together." 

Lydia explains that she was abducted, tortured, sexually abused, and held captive until just a few months ago when she managed to escape. She has been working her way back to Bent Creek, sleeping on park benches, in post offices, working here and there along the way. Finally back home, she finds a "help wanted" sign in the window of The Blessed Alchemist store owned by Delphine DuBois, an intuitive who has lost her husband and daughter. Calling Lydia "Angel," she agrees to let her stay in her deceased daughter's room in exchange for working in the store and home. But Delphine makes clear that Lydia must pass a drug test, work to get her affairs in order without delay, and always be completely honest. Lydia explains only that she's been "off the grid" and must get a new copy of her birth certificate in order to obtain a driver's license and Social Security number so that Delphine can put her on the store's payroll. What Lydia doesn't reveal, of course, is that the actual documents belong to a woman who is, from a legal standpoint, dead. And she is back in town in order to be reunited with Luca. "I'm here for one thing and one thing only -- to get my life back." Is she set on breaking up Luca's second marriage?

Kent advances the story via alternating chapters expressing the women's experiences and perspectives. Merritt is sweet and conciliatory in her dealings with Lydia, expressing sympathy for Lydia because she managed to survive a decade-long nightmare. She aggressively tries to help Lydia by, for example, taking her shopping for clothes. But those overtures are solely for the purpose of ensuring that Lydia does not disrupt the life she has built with Luca. She confesses that she is actually terrified of Lydia and what her reappearance might mean for Merritt's family. Her goal is to befriend Lydia in order to pacify her so she will simply move on, leaving Merritt to enjoy the perfect life with Luca that she has carefully cultivated. 

Lydia is grateful to and genuinely fond of Delphine, determined not to do anything to hurt her. But she is understandably angry and resentful about what happened to her. "Who knows how I'd have turned out if it weren't for that fateful afternoon in the woods. . . . I can't stop focusing on the imbalance of justice." She insists that she must meet with Luca face-to-face and eventually does. Kent's portrayal of their reunion is a fascinating character study, His reaction to seeing her again, along with Lydia's failure to go straight to the police when she escaped the captor she refers to as "The Monster," are clues that Kent has again crafted an intricately-constructed story in which shocking revelations are imminent.

As Lydia gets to know Merritt, she finds herself caring for her and her children, harboring no ill will toward her for having married and started a family with Luca. Rather, she is determined to protect Merritt and the children when she eventually comes to believe that Merritt is a victim from whom Luca has been keeping terrible secrets. But Lydia is strong, resourceful, and resolved. She has had a full decade to imagine and plan what she would do once she regained her freedom. And no matter how much she wants to shield Merritt from getting hurt, she has no intention of going anywhere until she gets exactly what she came back to Bent Creek for. 

Gradually, Kent reveals that the true agendas and motives of each character are quite disparate from the way in which readers originally perceive them. Kent provides the clues from the story's inception. But like a magician employing misdirection, Kent initially draws readers' attention away from those clues, distracting them until she is ready to surprise them by taking the story down a completely unexpected path. At that point, the pace of the tale continues accelerating to an explosive conclusion. 

Readers will likely guess the biggest twist long before Kent discloses it, but that fact does not detract from the book's entertainment value. Lydia is a sympathetic character, and Kent's revelations of the truth further endear her to readers, along with the tender-hearted and lonely Delphine. Readers will find themselves reading feverishly to see if their hunch is accurate and learn whether Kent provides both ladies a happy ending. And delivers justice to "The Monster." Which makes Unmissing a thoroughly enjoyable thriller.
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Thank you to NetGalley, Minka Kent and Thomas & Mercer for the free e-book in exchange for an honest review.

This was a unique premise and a very quick read. The twists were definitely unexpected, but I just didn't connect with any of the characters. I'm still glad that I read it because I enjoyed the twists, but it won't be for everyone.
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I really enjoyed this thriller! Minka Kent is definitely a master at creating mood.

Lydia is taken and tortured while hiking alone. Several years later she escapes and returns to find her husband married to another woman.

Things are definitely off, and the truth is slowly revealed to the reader in a series of shocking twists and turns.

I loved the author’s style and the twists and turns along the way.
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Luca and Merritt have a life many would dream of - a loving marriage, a string of popular restaurants, one young child and another on the way.  One night while Luca is out of town on business, a stranger knocks on their door and tells Merritt she's Luca's first wife - the one who disappeared while hiking years ago and was presumed dead.  The first half of the book was the slow, getting-to-know-you phase, but once the action picked up, it REALLY picked up.  Everyone had secrets, and no one was as likeable or reliable as I'd first thought.  The only reason I didn't give this book a higher rating was there were a number of ridiculous plot points, among the many unbelievable ones.  Many thanks to NetGalley, Thomas and Mercer, and Ms. Kent for the ARC of this title.
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This book drew me in immediately and I was glued to it until I finished the last page!  If you are already a fan of Minka Kent, you will love this one, also.  If you're new to this author, she is a talented writer with strong pacing.

The story begins with Luca's first wife, Lydia, who was abducted 10 years ago and disappeared without a trace. After years, Luca moves on and appears to be a successful, happy husband and father..  Ten years later, Lydia appears on the new family's doorstep, with a harrowing tale.

There were twists and turns throughout this book and even though I didn't always like the characters, I did want to see how it played out.  I highly recommend this book.
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This book had my attention from the beginning and throughout!  It was very suspenseful and full of twists!  The characters are very clever and aren't what you originally expect.  The story is quick paced and full of twists and turns.  I challenge you to put this one down!  Thank you net galley and the publisher for my advanced copy!
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This was a new to me author and one I'll definitely be reading more from in the future. 
This book took me by surprise. From the blurb I knew I would love it, but going in, the first 60% while good, it definitely had you waiting for the other shoe to drop. And boy did it drop.
Once it did I couldn't stop madly turning the pages as all the secrets come to light with no reprieve, so by the time you get to the last page your brain feels like it's exploding.
Very cleverly done. 
This is not a romance and I loved that fact.
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Unmissing by Minka Kent, is a mystery, thriller from the start  It is not short on action or slow in pace.  The characters are described as what I would call "fake people".   Their characters are not exactly identifiable., but that is just as well, as they are all bad people.  The grand finale was not a surprise at all.  I almost think it was written that way purposefully so that little "wow moments" would carry more weight.  Unfortunately, even those had been visited in other reads and movies of late.  The story was rather wishy-washy.  We aren't talking true crime with police, laws, and real people.  We are talking long presumed dead, missing wife, becoming besties with husbands new wife/family.  New wife bleads husband dry financially, and now reappearing wife does the same.  Missing wife was traumatized by ex-husband, yet seems okay with the fact he tried to kill her. Nobody seems to care about anyone but themselves and coming out ahead.  Greed, deceit, you know the drill.  In all, the three main characters are all mean and selfish.  They deserve each other.

I find myself, a fan of many of  Minka's other titles, a bit let down by this particular read.  During the entire book I kept thinking I had read or seen this somewhere before.  It was so similar to other books, that indeed, it was like rereading a mediocre book over and over.  I'm sorry to have to say, as a first time reader of this author, you might be quite content, however, as a repeat reader of all things Kent, this was not a favorite.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing this read in exchange for my honest opinion.

#netgalley #unmissing
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Pros: Jamie Golden recommended this book on the Popcast, and I trust her recommendations. This book has a fun premise—it made me think of One True Loves meets Gone Girl. I liked that this was a quick read with short chapters—it could be read in one sitting.

Cons: I can’t think of any specific cons—this book does what it sets out to do, and I think people who love to read thrillers will enjoy this book.

Thank you to NetGalley and Thomas & Mercer for the opportunity to read this book.

I’ve shared this review on Goodreads, StoryGraph, and Amazon.

3.5 stars
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I love Minka Kent and her novels, but I am not 100% sold on this one (thus, the four-star recommendation).  It feels just a bit unrealistic with unlikeable characters – a deadly combination.  Don’t get me wrong, it seems to work here but leaves you wondering if it couldn’t be better.  Sometimes, I think of these as deadline books.  Still good, but not as good as the earlier novels that make the author one of my favorites.

There is plenty of suspense and several unanticipated twists.  I recommend reading this book.  It is good but not up to Minka Kent’s normally wonderful characters and plot.

I received an ARC from Thomas & Mercer through NetGalley.  This in no way affects my opinion or rating of this book.  I am voluntarily submitting this review and am under no obligation to do so.
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'𝑪𝒂𝒏 𝒘𝒆 𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓 𝒕𝒓𝒖𝒍𝒚 𝒌𝒏𝒐𝒘 𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓𝒚𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒂𝒃𝒐𝒖𝒕 𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓𝒚𝒐𝒏𝒆?'
A slew of rave reviews on my Bookstagram feed pushed me to request for this book and honestly, I am so glad that I did. 

Merritt and Luca Coletto's idyllic married life receives a rude awakening, when Luca's first wife, Lydia, who was presumed dead after she went missing ten years ago, turns up at their doorstep. A haggard-looking Lydia shares a disturbing account of what exactly had happened to her all those years ago. An insecure, but sympathetic Merritt chooses to help Lydia get back on her feet, so that she may move on in her life. But Lydia seems to have a different agenda altogether and it waits to be seen how her plans affect the Coletto's marriage. 

Right from the word go, the plot has one's attention in a vice grip and doesn't let up until the very end. The narrative, which alternates between Lydia and Merritt's POV is fast-paced and crisp; in short, it is simply unputdownable. 

The plot is mired in suspense till about half-way point, post which the plot twists are dealt out leaving one slack-jawed. The ending was adrenaline-packed, applause-worthy and so, so fitting for what had been, until then, an intense ride. 

Overall, deliciously twisty. Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing a digital copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
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This was new author for me and looking forward to reading more of these awesome thrillers.  

Newly Wed, Lydia is out walking when she is kidnapped. 

Forward nine years, and she’s at he husband’s door, speaking to his second wife Merritt. 

Where has Lydia been for nine years? 

This story had me captivated from beginning to end. It was full of plot twists and jaw dropping moments. So good!
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Out on a run newly married Lydia is abducted and held captive in a shack for nine years. During that time she endures torture and abuse on a regular basis. She gains her freedom after being shot and left for dead and decides she wants what she was deprived of for those missing years. Her husband Luca has remarried and has a family. His new wife Merritt has worked hard to build a perfect life and she doesn’t want anything to threaten its existence.
This book has a great start. It grabbed my interest my and made me want to read more. There are also plenty of surprises and twists in this novel and I enjoyed every turn it made.
The sympathy I felt for Lydia for being held captive changed when she revealed her plan for revenge. Later I was stunned when she supplied details of her captor and shocked as the true colours of another were exposed.
This story caused me to wonder about a few things eg how does someone survive 9 years of captivity and the huge impact on loved ones when a person presumed dead returns . Life could never been the same again for either! It also reminds me how convincing some people can be.
I found this more intriguing than captivating but I’m not sure why that was so.
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a free digital advance copy of the uncorrected proof in return for an honest review.
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Very good book. Thrilling from the beginning. Definitely recommend! 

I would like to thank NetGalley, the publisher, and the author for giving me the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest review.
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Unmissing is a mystery/thriller set in Oregon. It is a quick read that kept my attention. This is my 7th book by this author.

This book alternates between two female 1st person POVs (Merritt and Lydia).

I went into this book completely blind. And I actually enjoyed finding out how these two women's stories connected.

None of the characters were overly likeable, which is a bit odd. But the characters were definitely interesting.

This was a fun thriller that was full of good twists. It is a page turner that will keep you guessing for most of the book!
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3.5 stars!
This thriller hit the shelves yesterday! Merritt and her husband Luca are the definition of the American dream with a successful (?) restaurant chain, multiple homes and a perfect child with another on the way. When Luca’s first wife, Lydia, reappears out of nowhere after being missing for 10 years, their world is turned upside down. Lydia tells a story of being held captive by a horrible man, but refuses to go to the police. Merritt becomes determined to find out the truth about Lydia once and for all as she enmeshes herself in their lives.

The first half of Kent’s novel draaaaaaaaaagged for me. Merritt was so boring and most of the chapters were from her POV. Then all of a sudden, the most subtle twist ever was woven in that had me going back and re-reading, going WHAT!? There were multiple surprises that came after that first twist that were so nonchalant it made it even more startling. I loved the writing style, just wish the start had hooked me a bit more!
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