The Girl In The River by Rita Herron

Today It’s over to Mandie who is sharing her thoughts on The Girl In The River by Rita Herron. Thanks to Bookouture for the advance copy for review and for including us in the tour. Here’s what it’s all about:

Source: Netgalley
Release Date: 06 December 2022
Publisher: Bookouture

About the Book

The body lay in the river, arms outstretched. Long brown hair swirled in all directions, flowing with the current of the water. Her eyes were wide open in death, pale pink lips parted in a scream.

Detective Ellie Reeves should be enjoying the wedding of her dear friend Mia Norman. But instead of celebrating, she is frantically searching for the missing bride. Something is terribly wrong—just hours ago, Mia was blissfully happy. Why would she suddenly vanish?

Bursting through the dressing room, Ellie finds it in disarray—chairs overturned, a perfume bottle shattered. Hiding in the bathroom is Mia’s six-year-old daughter Pixie, curled in a ball and sobbing her heart out. The little girl says she was locked inside when she heard a man’s voice, and her mother crying. “I just want my mommy back,” she pleads. Ellie vows to make that happen.

Turning the venue upside down, Ellie’s blood turns to ice when she reaches the riverbank. Someone is dead in the rippling water, floating beside a white veil. Ellie holds her breath as she turns the body over. It belongs to Tori, Mia’s bridesmaid, a gunshot wound in her back. Near the murder scene, Ellie discovers a button from a man’s shirt, and her friend’s engagement ring. The race is on to find Mia—before it’s too late.

When forensics come back, the investigation takes a dark turn. DNA proves that Mia was actually Jesse Habersham, a woman who went missing five years ago. Ellie is certain that Mia was running from someone. Did her past finally catch up with her?

Facing the most complex case of her career, Ellie is in a race against time. Can she uncover the truth before her friend is brutally killed? And when the murderer comes after innocent little Pixie, will Ellie save her from the clutches of death?

This pulse-pounding and utterly addictive crime thriller will have you staying up way past your bedtime, and scared to turn the lights off! Perfect for fans of Melinda Leigh, Lisa Regan and Kendra Elliot.

Mandie’s Thoughts

The Girl in the River is the seventh book in the Detective Ellie Reeves series but the first one I have read. I have found more and more I am jumping into a series mid-way and I certainly had no problem following the action or getting involved with the characters that Rita Herron has created as they are believable and ones that you can quickly warm to. The opening chapter is quick and mysterious and sets the scene for the action that follows. 

Ellie Reeves is attending the wedding of her friend Mia Norman when both Mia and her bridesmaid Tori disappear before the ceremony. Ellie knows that Mia did not leave of her own accord as she left behind her daughter Pixie, who is found locked in a bathroom. When Tori’s body is found in the river, the race is on to find Mia and determine what exactly happened. 

I liked Ellie almost instantly. She is a fiercely determined person who is loyal to her friends and also manages to inspire loyalty from others. Sometimes her independence can get her into situations that can be dangerous but more often than not it is because she wants to do a good job and solve the case. She refuses to be bullied by others within law enforcement even when they think she is overstepping boundaries. When she is confronted by the influential family in a small town it just makes her double down on her investigations. There are times however that I did think that she could be a little blinkered in her personal life but I am already kind of hoping that eventually she will work it out without jeopardising her working relationships in the process. 

Mia was clearly keeping secrets about her past and who she was but as the book progressed and the truth was revealed I can understand why and believe she was doing the best for her and her daughter, even though she felt she couldn’t trust those she loved. 

This is quite a fast-paced action-packed book that is helped by it short chapters. The setting of the small town with its close-knit community, untrusting of outsiders helps to increase the tension and makes the suspect pool that litter harder to determine. The Girl in the River works well as either a stand alone or as part of the series and if like me this is the first one you pick up then I think discovering books 1 – 6 is a must.

About the Author

USA Today Bestselling and award-winning author Rita Herron fell in love with books at the ripe age of eight when she read her first Trixie Belden mystery. But she didn’t think real people grew up to be writers, so she became a teacher instead. Now she writes so she doesn’t have to get a real job.

With over ninety books to her credit, she’s penned romantic suspense, romantic comedy, and YA novels, but she especially likes writing dark romantic suspense and crime fiction set in small southern towns.

Follow the tour: