The Missing American

The Missing American

Book - 2020
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When her dreams of rising through the police ranks like her late father crash around her, 26-year-old Emma Djan is unsure what will become of her life in Accra. Through a sympathetic former colleague, Emma gets an interview with a private detective agency tracking down missing persons, thefts, and marital infidelities. It's not the future she imagined, but it's her best option. Meanwhile, Gordon Tilson, a middle-aged widower in Washington, DC, has found solace in an online community after his wife's passing. Through the support group, he's even met a young Ghanaian widow he really cares about, and when her sister gets into a car accident, he sends her thousands of dollars to cover the hospital bill--to the horror of his only son, Derek. When Gordon runs off to Ghana to surprise his new love and disappears, Derek chases after him, fearing for his father's life. The case of the missing American man will drag both Emma and Derek into a world of Sakawa scams, fetish priests, and those willing to keep things secret through death.
Publisher: New York, NY : Soho Crime, [2020]
Copyright Date: ©2020
ISBN: 9781641290708
Branch Call Number: QUART
Characteristics: 419 pages ; 23 cm.


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Mar 03, 2021

This is billed as "sunshine noir", a mix of international mystery & thriller. On one hand, the beginning seemed a little long as various pieces of the story were introduced (including the career background & trajectory since this is the first of a new series), but by the end, the pace definitely picked up & all the various pieces fell into place. The chapters are short, often jumping between characters &/or the timeline as the novel unfolds. (Only one chapter seemed gratuitous & probably could have been omitted without a problem.) I enjoyed the intermittent use of Ghanaian words (there's a glossary), the very clear way that politeness in Ghanaian society is mixed into everything in the story (characters often add "please" to their sentences), & the descriptions of daily life. It's also very on topic with internet scams, corrupt police, & greedy politicians, to name a few things. I enjoyed this one.

Feb 26, 2021

Very enjoyable. I was completely unaware of the culture of Ghana and had trouble locating it on a map of Africa! Read it. You'll like it.

Dec 21, 2020

NPR best mysteries 2020 list

Feb 08, 2020

Edmonton Journal

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