On a hiking trip in Mexico (undertaken after the unexpected collapse of her marriage), Eve Hardaway chances upon what appears to be a man taking target practice, with a machete, at a target that looks like a human being. Soon Eve discovers clues that point to another woman having disappeared after encountering the man. Eve determines to find out what happened to the woman, but she doesn’t count on uncovering a secret so shocking that someone will kill to protect it. This is a bit of a change of pace for Hurwitz, whose novels mostly take place in urban settings and involve threats that are a little less over-the-top than those posed by the villain of this piece. Eve is a Hurwitz-style protagonist, an ordinary person caught up in an extraordinary situation, but the story feels a little forced. Some readers might wonder if the backstory is a tad more complicated, not to mention weighted with political significance, than it needs to be. Though the novel is not as compellingly written as we’ve come to expect from Hurwitz, the thriller element will hold the interest of the author’s large fan base.
This review originally appeared in Booklist, June 2014.