Hide In Place, the debut thriller by Emilya Naymark.
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Hide In Place
She left the NYPD in the firestorm of a high-profile case gone horribly wrong. Three years later, the ghosts of her past roar back to terrifying life.
When NYPD undercover cop Laney Bird’s cover is blown in a racketeering case against the Russian mob, she flees the city with her troubled son, Alfie. Now, three years later, she’s found the perfect haven in Sylvan, a charming town in upstate New York.
But then the unthinkable happens: her boy vanishes.
Local law enforcement dismisses the thirteen-year-old as a runaway, but Laney knows better. Alfie would never abandon his special routines and the sanctuary of their home. Could he have been kidnapped–or worse? As a February snowstorm rips through the region, Laney is forced to launch her own investigation, using every trick she learned in her years undercover.
As she digs deeper into the disappearance, Laney learns that Alfie and a friend had been meeting with an older man who himself vanished, but not before leaving a corpse in his garage. With dawning horror, Laney discovers that the man was a confidential informant from a high-profile case she had handled in the past.
Although he had never known her real identity, he knows it now. Which means several other enemies do, too. Time is running out, and as Laney’s search for her son grows more desperate, everything depends on how good a detective she really is–badge or no.
Published by: Crooked Lane Books
Publication Date: February 9, 2020
Number of Pages: 278
ISBN: 1643856375 (ISBN13: 9781643856377)
To buy the book, click on any of the following links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads
My thoughts on Hide In Place
“Laney Bird’s son vanished the night she drove a busload of high school seniors to see Wicked on Broadway.” Emilya Naymark had me hooked from the first line of her debut novel. Laney Bird is the perfect heroine. Tough, scrappy, flawed . . . and now, terrified.
Once a well-respected uncover cop with the NYPD, married to the “perfect” man, and the mother of an adorable toddler, at the start of Hide in Place Laney finds herself divorced and living in Sylvan, New York, with a difficult teen she doesn’t know how to handle.
It’s her son’s troubled history that makes the local authorities dismiss her fears when she arrives at the police station to report her son gone.
“It’s Alfie,” she said, her voice coming shrill and taut from her throat, hurting her. “He’s not home. Hasn’t come home.”
“Again?” asked Ed.
His eyes settled on her…
What’s a mother to do? Well, if you were once a hardworking police officer with multiple arrests under your belt, you race to solve your son’s disappearance yourself.
The more Laney digs into her son’s disappearance, the more she realizes her past has arrived to haunt them both. The clues lead her back into her undercover life, and her undercover persona Kendra. Wearing Kendra’s identity again allows Laney to act outside normal societal conventions.
Laney shines as a distraught mother willing to do anything to protect her son. Alfie is oddly empathetic in the chapters that shift to his point of view. Though Naymark never spells out exactly what Alfie struggles with, we come to discover the challenges he faces fitting in with his friends, his teachers, and his community.
The local cop, the aforementioned Ed, also becomes much more relatable as the story unfolds and he begins to realize that Laney is a lot more than just an overworked, overstressed mom of a challenging son.
Rounding out the characters, Laney’s best friend Holly is everything Laney is not, girly, sociable, color-coordinated, and nonjudgmental. Holly brings a little lightness to the dark world Laney inhabits, and the even darker world where Alfie finds himself. Holly is also fearless and loyal, two characteristics of a friend that are just what Laney needs.
While the novel does focus primarily on Laney in the present, we also experience Alfie’s situation from his perspective and Naymark reveals much of Laney’s past as well. Twisting the three aspects together provides the reader a full picture of the complexities of the plot, which comes to a satisfying end.
Life is never going to be easy for Laney, but that just provides an excellent platform to launch the next book in what I hope will be a long and successful series.
Emilya Naymark: Author of Hide in Place
Emilya Naymark’s short stories appear in Secrets in the Water, After Midnight: Tales from the Graveyard Shift, River River Journal, Snowbound: Best New England Crime Stories 2017, 1+30: THE BEST OF MYSTORY, and in the upcoming Harper Collins anthology A Stranger Comes to Town.
She has a degree in fine art, and her artworks have been published in numerous magazines and books, earning her a reputation as a creator of dark, psychological pieces.
When not writing, Emilya works as a visual artist and reads massive quantities of thrillers and crime fiction. She lives in the Hudson Valley with her family.
To learn more about Emilya, click on her name, photo, or any of the following links: Goodreads, BookBub, Instagram, Twitter & Facebook
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Elena Taylor is the author of All We Buried, available now in print, e-book, and audio book format at all your favorite on-line retailers. And don’t forget many independent bookstores can order books for you and have them shipped to your home or for curbside pickup.
For more information on All We Buried, click on the link here to visit the home page.