Lost Hours will be released next Tuesday, December 5.
You can preorder it here today!
Lost Hours: A Mystery (Alaska Wild)
5th in Series
Setting – Alaska
Minotaur Books (December 5, 2023)
Hardcover : 288 pages
ISBN-10 : 1250846617
ISBN-13 : 978-1250846617
Kindle ASIN : B0BQGH2JV6
A year after arriving in Benedict, Beth Rivers is feeling very at home in Alaska, even as outsiders are starting to return to enjoy the brief summer perfection. Beth feels like she’s finally let go of most of her demons. She’s even found her father, Eddy Rivers—or, rather, he found her—and she’s trying to find the middle ground between anger and forgiveness.
One sunny July day, Beth boards a tourist ship to see the glaciers, the main reason visitors venture to the area, and something Beth hasn’t attempted until now. But when the captain has to navigate to an island, a bloodied woman is found standing on the shore, waving for help. When she’s brought aboard, she claims she was kidnapped from her home in Juneau three days earlier, and that a bear on the island killed her captor. She, however, is unharmed.
The woman, Sadie, finds a sympathetic ear in Beth. She tells her that she’s been in Juneau under witness protection and that the Juneau police don’t like her. When another kidnapping occurs, Beth and police chief Gril can’t help but think the two cases are interwoven, though the clues to solving them will be harder to unravel.
We return to Benedict, Alaska, where Beth Rivers has made her home since fleeing from the lower 48. She is fitting in well with the other residents and has relaxed since her ordeal a year ago. Her father, Eddie, is now in Benedict too. He has bought a boat and working as a fishing guide. She is really trying to forgive him but she will never forget him leaving her and her mother behind.
It is unseasonably warm for July so she decides to finally see the glaciers from the water. She and her “man-friend” Tex board a tour boat and are enjoying the ride and the scenery when the ship takes a “sharp right veer” and a siren starts blasting. When the siren stops they see a woman on the shore of a nearby island screaming and signaling for help. She appears to be covered in blood. Tex helps with the rescue and brings her aboard the boat and tells Beth he thinks she can help the woman. Her name is Sadie and she says she was taken from her home in Juneau and brought to the island.
Later a young woman goes missing from the same island. Are the events connected? Can Beth help Police Chief Gril untangle the clues? Or will the events be too close to what happened to her that she needs to back off to save herself?
The characters Ms. Shelton has created for this series get stronger and more fleshed out in each story. Beth has truly become a part of the community and she has earned the trust of Viola, Orin, and Gril. She also stands up for herself in ways she didn’t in previous books. Her relationship with Tex is evolving in a way that makes sense for both of them. Her father, Eddie plays a large role in this story and it was interesting to watch the relationship start to move in a positive direction.
The mysteries in this story take the readers along with the characters on quite an adventure. Beth pushes to be involved and I love that. Clues are found in interesting places, some discarded at first come into play later. The story had many layers that needed to be peeled away to move forward. There are twists, turns, and strange connections that all lead to an exciting end. Beth traveled somewhere I never would have been able to go. Ms. Shelton’s writing was so powerful in the whole book but especially in that scene, I had to put the book down and take a couple of deep breaths. The author sets a fast pace from the start so I was not surprised that I read the book all in one sitting.
Lost Hours is a compelling story filled with suspense and intrigue. I am totally invested in Beth’s life and hated to leave Benedict because while Beth, aka Elizabeth Fairchild, finished her current book by the deadline Beth’s story is nowhere near complete. I see more danger in her future so it’s going to be tough waiting a year for Ms. Shelton’s next book to be released but this has been the case when I finish each book in this series so I know it will be worth the wait. She is an outstanding storyteller. I will be including Lost Hours on my Best Reads List for 2023.
Note: Each book in this series can be read on its own but to really enjoy the series you have to know Beth’s story from the start.
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About The Author
PAIGE SHELTON had a nomadic childhood, as her father’s job as a football coach took her family to seven different towns before she was even twelve years old. After college at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, she moved to Salt Lake City. She thought she’d only stay a couple of years, but instead, she fell in love with the mountains and a great guy who became her husband. After many decades in Utah, she and her family moved to Arizona. She writes the Scottish Bookshop Mystery series and the Alaska Wild series. Her other series include the Farmers’ Market, Cooking School, and Dangerous Type mystery series.
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”