The Vanishing Season

A novel by Joanna Schaffhausen.

Joanna Schaffhausen

Ellery Hathaway knows a thing or two about serial killers, but not through her police training. She's an officer in sleepy Woodbury, MA, where a bicycle theft still makes the newspapers. No one there knows she was once victim number 17 in the grisly story of serial killer Francis Michael Coben. The only one who lived.

When three people disappear from her town in three years — all around her birthday — Ellery fears someone knows her secret. Someone very dangerous. Her superiors dismiss her concerns, but Ellery knows the vanishing season is coming and anyone could be next. She contacts the one man she knows will believe her: the FBI agent who saved her from a killer all those years ago.

Agent Reed Markham made his name and fame on the back of the Coben case, but his fortunes have since turned. His marriage is in shambles, his bosses think he's washed up, and worst of all, he blew a major investigation. When Ellery calls him, he can't help but wonder: sure, he rescued her, but was she ever truly saved? His greatest triumph is Ellery's waking nightmare, and now both of them are about to be sucked into the past, back to the case that made them... with a killer who can't let go. (From Minotaur)

From the book

Ellery Hathaway emerged from the steamy bathroom, toweling her hair dry, dressed again and ready to leave, but Sam still lay sprawled in the motel bed with its squeaky mattress and scratchy sheets. Always he wanted to stay just a little bit longer, kiss her just one more time. It was one of the things she hated about him. "It's almost midnight," she said as she laid the damp towel over the back of a cheap motel chair. The room was swimming in shadows, just like always, because she never let him see her all the way naked. It was a practical concern more than a manipulative one, but the more she held back, the more he wanted. She definitely had his attention now.

From The Vanishing Season by Joanna Schaffhausen ©2017. Published by Minotaur.