I’m delighted to be kicking off the blog tour for Susie Steiner’s wonderful Missing, Presumed.
I posted my original review in January, (you can see the post here), but I thought I’d add a little extra for the blog tour. Missing, Presumed focuses on the search for a missing person – the young, beautiful and well-connected Edith Hind. At the house she shares with her partner Will, there are some small signs of a struggle – a drop of blood, belongings in disarray – but of Edith herself, there is no sign.
Detective Sergeant Manon Bradshaw is assigned to the case, and she and her colleagues throw themselves into it, desperate to find the missing woman.
There is plenty to like in Missing, Presumed. The case feels realistic – we get insights into the case and how the team go about following the various leads, but also about more “real-world” concerns such as the impact of ever-reducing budgets and the pressure exerted by the press. And if that wasn’t enough, Edith father has friends in high places, and isn’t beyond using his connections to put additional pressure on the team. I think that Steiner, having worked in journalism, understands the inner workings of the police force, and this experience shines through in the novel.
Whilst the novel sits most comfortably in the crime genre, I think that it has a little something extra to offer the reader. It’s much more character driven, so even while you’re following the case, much of the focus is on the team who are trying to solve it. And what characters they are! Manon has a big heart, and you sympathise with her (often cringe-worthy!) internet dating experiences. And the secondary characters are well fleshed out too – they aren’t just there to make up the numbers. These are fully realised characters who argue, make up, get drunk and have their own lives and problems going on outside of the case at hand.
Missing, Presumed is published on 25 February, and comes highly recommended – it’s gritty and well written, and has an undertone of dark humour running through it. I really hope the Steiner has a follow up planned – I’ll definitely be looking out for the further adventures on DS Manon Bradshaw!