Wendy Corsi Staub
Zebra, May 2008, $6.99
Her mother vanished when Camden Hastings was a child; soon afterward her sister committed suicide. Haunted by the losses, as a teen, Cam began seeing horrific visions of frightened children in danger.
Cam loves her husband Mike, but her demons have led to her having alcohol problem and other issues; they are separated. She hopes to save her relationship with Mike but plans to start over for the sake of their teenage daughter, Tess. However, on Long Beach Island off the Jersey shore, Cam sees the poster of a child who has haunted her recent dreams. She tries to be the Good Samaritan assisting the police only to have Tess abducted; she and Mike desperately try to find their child before it is too late.
This complex paranormal suspense thriller seems initially overwhelming as the myriad of subplots keep changing as does the prime player. Once the table is set by talented Wendy Corsi Staub (about a fourth of the way in) readers will appreciate the increasingly tense tale as the audience can feel the horror eating at Cam’s gut. She is a fabulous protagonist as she learns no good deed goes unpunished yet cannot ignore her visions partially because she was helpless when her sister died and her mother disappeared; fans will root for her as she and Mike struggle to save Tess.