SUMMARY: An eight-year-old girl, Chelsea Compton, is missing in Pine Valley, California and for Detective Katie Scott it’s a cruel reminder of the friend who disappeared from summer camp twenty years ago. Unable to shake the memories, Katie vows she won’t rest until she discovers what happened to Chelsea.
The BookViral Review: Many crime thrillers run the risk of being too dark with characters that almost become caricatures but Jennifer Chase has continually refined her novels to give us intriguing plots, perfect pacing and no shortage of interesting revelations. Little Girls Sleeping certainly lives up to those expectations with Chase giving Katie more specific dialogue than is usual in crime thrillers. An ex patrol officer and soldier recently returned from active combat she’s in psychic repair as she learns to cope with PTSD but buries her pain behind a brave face and a positive attitude. Chase has a gift for conveying the sadness and vulnerabilities of her characters and here again, her writing oozes authenticity especially when focusing on the relationship between Katie and her military dog Cisco.
Firing on all cylinders as a crime thriller and police procedural it’s not so much the identity of the killer that gives Little Girls Sleeping its edge but the way Chase raises mystery to the level of moral provocation. The Toymaker is a grossly unsettling serial killer and Chase creates a morbid sense of unease that burgeons from page to page.
The start of an entertaining new series and one that should sate the appetites of her many fans Little Girls Sleeping is highly recommended.