Cover Image: The Last to Vanish

The Last to Vanish

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Abby Lovett has been working at an inn in Cutters Pass, NC for over 10 years, but she is still considered an outsider by townies. Tourists visit for hiking adventures even though 6 have vanished without a trace. When the brother of a missing guest makes a surprise visit to the inn, Abby’s desire to learn the truth behind the mystery of the vanished tourists is fueled, further ostracizing her from the locals while also putting her life in danger.

The best thing about this book is the atmosphere. Cutter’s Pass is portrayed as dark, isolated, moody, and cold, and the atmosphere comes through in almost every chapter. It plays a central role in the plot and the characters, as it adds a layer of deceitfulness and distrust that permeates the town.

Abby is the sole narrator. I never love MM’s heroines, but I found Abby the most likable of them all. Even though the plot is focused on events from the past, the narrative takes place in the present, which worked well to stoke the tension and suspense as the reader isn’t quite sure what is going on in Cutter’s Pass, as the town exists in a history built of myth, rumors, and reality.

There is one surprising twist that I didn’t see coming, but I probably should have. The reveal of the killer was a bit anti-climactic, but because I identified them early on.

The pacing is slow, and the plot focuses as much on Abby’s character as it does on the vanished tourists. The tone is muted, which I have come to associate with MM’s writing. The pacing and the plot worked for me, but I found the last 10% to be a little bland and boring when it should have been quite the opposite. I also wanted to know more about some of the characters.

I wish the characters were a little more fleshed out, especially the townies, but, overall, I enjoyed the mystery, Abby, and, most of all, the pervasive atmosphere of Cutler's Pass.

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A beautiful but sinister setting, a town full of secrets. What are they hiding?

Abigail Lovett has worked at The Passage Inn for the past ten years. The little resort is located in the North Carolina mountain town of Cutter's Pass and right off the popular Appalachian trail. The Inn offers many activities for all the tourists who are interested in hiking, camping, and other outdoor pursuits. More recently, however, the town has become infamous for a series of mysterious disappearances of visitors to the area. Seven people have gone missing over the last decade. No trace of any has ever been found. The last to vanish was a journalist, Landon West, who was there to investigate the story. When his brother, Trey, shows up in Cutter's Pass and stays in the room that had been Landon's, things start happening. Will this mystery finally be solved?

This suspense thriller was full of some dubious characters, none that are forthright or talkative about the truth of who saw what when. Everyone seems to be intent on hiding something. The narrator, Abby, is very unreliable and is sort of an outsider who wants to be in. The story moves rather slowly and it builds tension as the reader tries to figure out where this is going and what happened to those people. I was so stoked up for something big that when the revelations come at the very end, I was so disappointed. I mean, that's where this is going?? After all that build up, the conclusion and explanations were a big let down. I would have to say that the setting was the biggest star of the book. I'm not an outdoorsy type myself, but the description made me want to visit the area.

Thank you to NetGalley and Scribner for this e-book ARC to read and review.

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A small town in North Carolina has a bad reputation for missing people. Visitors come here to hike the nearby mountains but some disappear. Stories are told and rumors ensue about each disappearance.

Trey West shows up in town to try to put the missing pieces together concerning the disappearance of his brother, Landon. Once he checks into the inn, Abby recognizes him. She becomes involved in trying to help Trey solve the mystery about his brother.

I gave this book only 3 stars because I felt the suspense never really climaxed. Each section of the book is told from a different perspective. I felt the book lacked in keeping the reader's attention.

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I'm always in such awe of Megan Miranda's writing. She writes in an almost lyrical way, and is the leader of the pack when it comes to making a scene, a landscape, a vision, EVERYTHING come alive. I was heavily invested in the book, as well as in Abby, and did NOT see the ending coming, which is always a pleasant surprise. Every time I see a new book by Megan Miranda, my heart speeds up a bit and I know I'm going to love it. This was no exception- in fact, it may be my favorite by her in a long time, which says something about her supreme talent. I can't wait to recommend this book, even though I know it will do most of the work for me, and sell itself.

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I've spent some time in the mountains of North Carolina, and I've found the thick, lush foliage sort of Sleepy-Hollowish. Megan Miranda captures this perfectly in THE LAST TO VANISH, as she describes the surroundings of the remote fictional town of Cutter's Pass. The book is told from the perspective of Abby Lovett, a young woman who happened into the town and ended up staying. Although she's been there, managing an isolated hotel, for ten years, she is still viewed as an outsider by the insular community. Her interest in the decades-old disappearance of four college friends and more recent disappearances of three other hikers does not help her fit in.

There's a creepy, foreboding sense to the writing, and this is really the biggest strength of the book. The combination of a place cut off from the modern world with Internet and phones constantly going out at the worst times, the almost smothering encroaching forest, and an overall atmosphere of menace is extremely well done. When the brother of the most recently vanished visitor to the hotel arrives and Abby attempts to help him find closure, the closely held secrets of the town start to emerge with frightening consequences.

The plotting is straightforward, until it isn't. By the time the twists and revelations start coming, we have a strong sense of place and character that helps them integrate into the plot without seeming to be drawn from thin air. All that the reader has learned about the life-long residents and the missing hikers helps make sense of the resolution. Over the course of the book, Abby's relationships with the other characters develop in as reasonable a manner as becoming a member of a closed-off community can be. Both the community of Cutter's Pass and Abby have secrets, and she can only be accepted once those secrets are shared.

This was my first read of a book by Megan Miranda, though she's written many thrillers. It was such an immersive experience that I am anxious to pick up one of her other books to see if she is always this good. I would suggest that you have some time available to you when you read this one, because you will not want to put it down.

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People die while hiking from dehydration, exposure, wild animals and other dangers, but do they completely disappear without a trace? The tourist mountain town of Cutter’s Pass has been labeled The Most Dangerous Town in North Carolina due to a string of unsolved disappearances. Ten years ago Abby Lovett settled in Cutter’s Pass and works at the Passage Inn that sponsors hiking trails leading to the Appalachian Trail. Yet, residents rarely open up to outsiders and seem to be guarding secrets. When Trey West arrives at the Passage Inn, Abby immediately realizes he’s seeking info on his brother’s disappearance. Abby becomes an amateur sleuth determined to find out how and why all these people vanished. Megan Miranda takes time setting her stage but pulls this many sided mystery together by blindsiding readers with a slick twist.

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Excellent mystery novel. It has all the great setups a rural mountain inn, a rash of disappearances, an outsider turned local and the mystery is not easily solved.

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The Last to Vanish by Megan Miranda

Who else is ready for spooky season?! 🙋🏻‍♀️

I’m starting to get into my thriller/mystery mood for fall!

Unfortunately, this didn’t kick it off with a bang, but it was still entertaining for the most part.

There was a pretty steady rhythm to this novel which was a little strange considering it was a thriller. I was never shocked or taken aback by anything that happened, but I also wasn’t bored. I kept wondering how and why people were disappearing over time and tried piecing it together.

The reveal of how it all went down was a bit of a let down, so I can’t highly recommend it, but it was an easier thriller if that is what you are looking for!

Thank you to @netgalley and @scribnerbooks for this arc in exchange for my honest review.

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I'm a longtime fan of Megan Miranda and believe she has far more hits than misses under her belt. Who doesn't get excited each summer when they see that combo of neon writing and a thriller of a story?

In The Last To Vanish, we've got one of my favorite combinations - a small town with secrets (in North Carolina!) and disappearing people. This cannot possibly be anything other than fantastic, am I right?

I thought that this was a FANTASTIC read and could not put it down. It was a bit slow to start, but that just helped build up the mood and atmosphere. I thought that overall this was a really enjoyable read.

I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

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I really wanted to love this book. The premise sounded interesting and exciting but overall the book was a flop. It was predictable, nothing really ever happened and overall it was just boring. There was so much potential to be a great thriller.

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Spoilers ahead --

Oh, this book, this book, I don't know about this was interesting, yes, but some of the ways they had the plot and things unfold and then explained or implied, it irked me. I haven't known for sure how to review this one for a little while now because of how it rubbed me the wrong way with some of the story, especially the ending.
So, what drives me nuts is how they explain the MC, Abigail, accepting things and going on with her life as normal, which I can't really say much because if I do it will spoil the story, but Ugh it drove me nuts. I did not like the ending. I don't know how much I liked this book because of the way it was written.
Okay, I'm going to say something and it might be spoilery so here's your warning: don't read further if you don't want spoilers.

I dislike that after we find out why Abigail is living in this town and that her Dad was killed as one of the Fraternity Four who went missing etc and she figures out who/how her Dad was killed she's just okay with it - like she doesn't seem to have that much anger toward the person who killed her Dad/was involved in his death and she doesn't have them arrested. Instead, Abigail finds out who the current killer is and has them arrested and blamed and covers for her dad's killer - I mean what the heck? I do not like when stories use Stockholm syndrome, like it's all fine and dandy or whatever, and don't point out the issue with it or anything. I don't know, maybe I misread or misunderstood it, but that ruined the whole book for me and I did not like it at all.
Thanks to NetGalley and Scribner/Marysue Rucci Books for letting me read and review this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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I've read and enjoyed all of Megan Miranda's books and this one was just as good as her others.
The setting was fantastic. I'm very much a setting reader as I rarely travel and real life and enjoy being able to visit places through literature. This book takes place in a small mountain town called Cutters Pass that is located near the Appalachian mountains. I especially enjoyed the Mountain Inn that was so well described that I felt I was there. This town holds many secrets that no one wants to talk about. What really happened to the seven people who have disappeared over the years? I loved the slow burn of this story, but I know some people don't have the patience to get that far. My advice is to keep going because once it picks up, it really gets going! . The story was unique and definitely drew me in quickly, just like her other books have. The mystery was intriguing and held me glued to the pages.

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The Last to Vanish is an edge of your seat thriller that follows the disappearance of several different people over the years and how far a town will go to hide the secrets of its residents. This story is told through the eyes of Abby, who is a manager at a Passage Inn, a resort found in the mountain town of Cutter’s Pass. This cozy and picture perfect resort is everything the outdoorsy type of guests would go with it hiking trails and activities centered around nature. Abby thinks she knows everything about the Inn, the town and the residents who have lived there through all the odd disappearances but she is very wrong. When the brother of one of people vanished shows up at the resort looking for answers Abby can’t help but start her own investigation not knowing that the answers might destroy what life she made for herself in Cutter’s Pass.

I really connected and liked the main character Abby and found myself rooting for her throughout her investigation and seeing everything come together through her eyes. I think my favorite part of this book would have to be the atmosphere as Miranda described the dark and mysterious landmarks in this town. I loved how every time Abby was in the Inn it was described as a cozy yet isolated and dark setting that she loved but didn’t always feel safe in. Another part of the story I really enjoyed was the pacing of the story because I can’t remember a part that dragged or had me putting the book down and having trouble picking it back up later. I found the plot twists that Miranda sprang on readers to be gasp worthy and had me rethinking everything I thought I knew about the story beforehand. I can safely say I did not see the twists that came at the end and I really enjoyed Miranda’s captivating writing that had me on the edge of my seat through most of the book. Thank you to netgalley for this digital copy of the ebook. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys atmospheric mysteries that is set in a cozy yet isolated Inn where the townspeople are very protective of their secrets.

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I loved the setting of this book! The Appalachian trail runs very close to home, so right away this story caught my attention. A small town just off the Appalachian trail, where people have mysteriously vanished over the years. Abby, who works and lives at the inn, where so many of them were last seen. She is thrown into solving the mystery when the brother of the most recently vanished person, shows up, and gets her to start asking more questions. The end is full of reveals that pull everything together and show the interconnections of so many characters. This one is definitely worth the read and has me looking forward to other books by Megan Miranda!

Thank you to NetGalley, Scribner, and Megan Miranda for providing me with this gifted copy in exchange for my honest review.

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The story starts out strong and has some interesting moments. But it overall never reaches a level of pure suspense or thrills. And the plot is so cringe with a few plot holes that never come together. I will admit the pacing is good, and it was entertaining enough, it just could have given a lot more.

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The level of tension this book has starting from the first page to the last twist will keep you riveted. Having lived in North Carolina and visited many a town that was similar to the setting of this book, I felt like I could envision exactly how everything happened. However, what I couldn’t see were the multiple twists the author had in store for us. I loved it!

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Miranda's books are hit or miss for me, and unfortunately this one did not work for me. The end grabbed me, but I was not captivated for the first 90%, sadly.

Thank you to Simon Books for an advanced copy. All opinions are my own.

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Megan Miranda is one of my go-to thriller authors. The Last to Vanish started a bit slow for me, but quickly picked up as Abby began investigating the mysterious disappearances in the small Appalachian town of Cutter's Pass. I have to admit, the twist at the end was one that I did not see coming!

Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for the advanced copy.

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3.5 Stars

A good read from Megan Miranda but it slightly lacked the suspense and mystery normally associated with her. The shocking twists at the end didn't hit as well and the entire "mystery" seemed forced and unbelievable. Even the reveal seemed a little too good to be true and slightly crazy. It was decent but not as good as I expect from Miranda.

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𝗘𝘃𝗲𝗿𝘆𝗼𝗻𝗲 𝗵𝗲𝗿𝗲 𝗶𝘀 𝗮𝗳𝗿𝗮𝗶𝗱 𝗼𝗳 𝗱𝗶𝘀𝗮𝗽𝗽𝗲𝗮𝗿𝗶𝗻𝗴. 𝗔𝗻𝗱 𝘁𝗵𝗮𝘁 𝗻𝗼 𝗼𝗻𝗲 𝗲𝗹𝘀𝗲 𝘄𝗼𝘂𝗹𝗱 𝗻𝗼𝘁𝗶𝗰𝗲 𝗯𝗲𝗳𝗼𝗿𝗲 𝗶𝘁 𝘄𝗮𝘀 𝘁𝗼𝗼 𝗹𝗮𝘁𝗲.

My initial thoughts is woah everyone in this town is a dick. Alright that might be a bit harsh but I felt like just about everyone in this town was hiding secrets. Added to the fact that they weren’t very friendly or trusting of outsiders, even to the ones who’ve been there for over a decade. They were all so fake and passive aggressive. I would never want to live in such a cold, untrusting place like this. I thought Megan Miranda‘s last book Such a Quiet Place that the neighborhood was a bunch of busybodies, but this town took it to another level. It definitely made everyone seem like a suspect. I was pretty surprised by some of the the twist and turns and the way things connected. This was a slow-burn thriller with a ton of misdirection making for an overall clever plot. The writing was also very suspenseful despite it lacking action. I really do think this is one of my favorite Megan Miranda books. Especially with the straight forward ending that actually provided closure unlike her other ones.

The premise: Abigail Lovett has been working at The Passage Inn, a cozy, upscale resort nestled in the North Carolina mountain town of Cutter’s Pass for the past 10 years. She was searching for a home after her mother passed away. Cutter’s Pass is best known for its outdoor offering and it’s close proximity to the Appalachian trail by way of a gorgeous waterfall—but it’s also known for the fact that 6 visitors have gone missing in the last 25 years. Dubbing it the most dangerous town in the state. Abby has sometimes felt like an outsider within the community, but she’s come to view Cutter’s Pass as her home. So when the brother of the last person to disappear shows up at the inn looking for answers, she begins to question to people closest to her.

Read if you like:
- Thrillers
- Unsolved cold cases
- Close knit community
- Mountain life
- Secrets/Lies

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