Best Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
In a series debut for fans of Tana French and Kate Atkinson, set in Dublin and New York, homicide detective Maggie D’arcy finally tackles the case that changed the course of her life.
Twenty-three years ago, Maggie D’arcy’s family received a call from the Dublin police. Her cousin Erin has been missing for several days. Maggie herself spent weeks in Ireland, trying to track Erin’s movements, working beside the police. But it was to no avail: No trace of her was ever found.
The experience inspired Maggie to become a cop. Now, back on Long Island, more than 20 years have passed. Maggie is a detective and a divorced mother of a teenager. When the Gardaí call to say that Erin’s scarf has been found and another young woman has gone missing, Maggie returns to Ireland, awakening all the complicated feelings from the first trip. The despair and frustration of not knowing what happened to Erin. Her attraction to Erin’s coworker, now a professor, who never fully explained their relationship. And her determination to solve the case, once and for all.
A lyrical, deeply drawn portrait of a woman – and a country – over two decades – The Mountains Wild introduces a compelling new mystery series from a mesmerizing author.
A Macmillan Audio production from Minotaur Books
This is a story told in a dual line 23 years apart. The storyline is told by Maggie, who in 2016 travels to Ireland after their call to her uncle regarding new information on the disappearance of her cousin Erin, missing since 1993.
Not like Maggie didn’t do this in 1993 when Erin first went missing, but this time she goes back with her experience as a mature and successful, well-known Long Island police detective. Things have certainly changed in their quaint Irish community and the descriptions of the countryside and people provide a colorful mind video.
Of course, having been to Ireland before, Maggie fondly remembers Connor, with whom she was not at the time destined to complete a romantic affair. This time, she’s left behind a daughter with her ex in the US in the hope of finally getting to the truth.
Turns out, the mystery is a slow burn while Maggie sifts through clues and in the meantime relates lovely little tidbits about the area and the people. Character-driven with obligatory twists. The switching of timelines, however, listening to the audiobook while multi-tasking can be confusing.
The reader/listener does get to know Maggie and really, she didn’t grab me. Nor, for that matter did Connor, and I was a bit appalled at her cavalier attitude toward her ex. Connor’s situation is a great deal more serious with his ex.
She is constantly mistaken for her cousin, which I thought stretched credibility. She is there as a civilian but tends more the detective than the relative. She discovers layers of coverup, backstory no one wanted.
Perhaps, in part, because I was listening, not reading, I missed a few of the loose threads tied in conclusion (although I must say, the narrator did a great job). It, as the rest of the low-key narrative, slipped in explanation for me and the episode ended. Maybe I missed something? I felt like it and wasn’t wholly satisfied.
I downloaded a copy of this audiobook from my local well-stocked library. These are my honest thoughts.
Genre: International Mystery & Crime, Police Procedural Mysteries
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Listening Length: 10 hrs 49 mins
Narrator: Marisa Calin
Publication Date: June 23, 2020
Source: Local Library (Audiobook Selections)
Title Link: The Mountains Wild [Amazon]
Rosepoint Publishing: Three point Five Stars
The Author: Sarah Stewart Taylor grew up on Long Island and was educated at Middlebury College and Trinity College, Dublin. She lives with her husband and three children on a farm in Vermont where they raise sheep and grow blueberries.
Sarah is the author of the Sweeney St. George series and the Maggie D’arcy series. The first Maggie D’arcy mystery, THE MOUNTAINS WILD, was nominated for the Dashiell Hammett Prize and was on numerous Best of 2020 lists. The new Maggie D’arcy novel, A STOLEN CHILD, will be out on June 20, 2023. [Bio and photo – Goodreads]
Follow her at http://www.sarahstewarttaylor.com/
The Narrator: Marisa Calin grew up in Bath, England, trained at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York and is an Audie, Odyssey, Audiofile Earphones Award winning and SOVAS nominated audiobook narrator. She’s had an Audible Best Audiobook of the Year, an Apple Books Must-Listen audiobook of the month, starred reviews in Publishers Weekly and School Library Journal, and books on YALSA’s Amazing Audiobooks of the year list. You can listen to extracts of some of those books here.
She wrote, produced and appears in her first feature, A Million Happy Nows, with her company, Perfect Features, which went on to win nineteen awards on the festival circuit, including Best First Feature at Outfest. Find more at amillionhappynows.com.
Her debut Young Adult novel, Between You & Me, published in 2012 by Bloomsbury, was named a Kirkus Reviews’ Best Book of 2012, recieved a Kirkus star for “books of exceptional merit”, was selected for the American Library Associations’ 2013 Rainbow Book List of quality books with authentic LGBT content, and was chosen as a Kobo dazzling debut.
She lives in New York City. [Courtesy Marisa Calin website]
©2023 V Williams