Shadows at Dusk – Elizabeth Goddard

Shadows at Dusk by Elizabeth Goddard
Also by this author: Don't Keep Silent, Present Danger, Deadly Target, Critical Alliance, Cold Light of Day, Hidden in the Night
Published by Revell on October 17, 2023
Genres: Fiction, Christian, Romance, Suspense
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Montana Detective Trevor West is desperate to learn what happened to his sister, who went missing in Alaska over a year ago, leaving nothing but a few photographs as clues to her whereabouts. At the advice of Police Chief Autumn Long, Trevor enlists the help of an experienced bush pilot. If Carrie James can't help him find the places in the photographs, no one can.
But Carrie has her own agenda. Grieving the death of her closest friend and the only person she could trust, Carrie will help Trevor find his sister on one condition--that he help her track down her friend's killer.
As the two close in on the answers they crave, they'll face dangers and connections they could not have imagined. They'll have to learn to trust one another--and face the dark secrets of the past--if they are ever to discover the truth and bring a killer to justice.

I waited too long to write this review; I admit it. But I did not wait because I didn’t enjoy Shadows at Dusk by Elizabeth Goddard. The second novel in Goddard’s “Missing in Alaska” series is an enjoyable, quick read. Anyone who dives into its pages won’t want to put the book down; I certainly didn’t. The fact I read it in a day proves my point!  What Cold Light of Day misses, Shadows at Dusk surpasses tenfold. Close relationships, believable characters, danger, murders—Shadows at Dusk has it all. And yes, of course Goddard mixes a missing person or two into the mix!

Carrie hides in Alaska from her past. Trevor bursts into her routine, concerned about a sister who disappeared in the frigid state a year ago. She’s stubborn and independent, protecting a heart that is not ready for love. That sort of affection isn’t on Trevor’s mind, either, but as a romantic suspense novel, it develops and builds until the end of the book.  We see Autumn Long and Grier again, minor characters but still serving the Shadow Gap community—and in turn, Trevor and Carrie. Shadows at Dusk stands alone well, but reading Cold Light of Day would benefit anyone exploring Goddard’s newest series. I say that even if I didn’t much like the first novel. Cold Light of Day just gives readers the background of the town and the characters that give it personality and life.

The relationship build-up between Trevor and Carrie is much better than Cold Light of Day. They fit better, and nothing feels forced. It’s never overwhelming; the characters stay committed to their tasks even when the affections bloom. Shadows at Dusk has everything a romantic suspense reader could want including threatened lives, high stakes, surprises galore, and…yes, tragic backstories. A heartbreaking past for at least one character seems to be a requirement in any book of the genre. Overall, though, I enjoyed Shadows at Dusk by Elizabeth Goddard; she delivered a fantastic tale that kept me enthralled and tuned in. Everything else outside of the novel faded away to meaningless. Sleep? Who needs it. Food? Not hungry! Not important! I can’t wait to inhale what more Goddard’s mixing in her imagination.

I spoil something in the next paragraph, so stop reading here if you don’t want my criticism tarnishing anything.

Something that bugged me to no end, though? Trevor’s sister left him photographs of different landmarks in Alaska. As he’s never been to the state, obviously he doesn’t know what they captured. He brings the envelope with him, holding the original photos. The photos with no copies. As soon as the pictures came up, my first thought was, “You better save those images to your phone or something, Trevor. You could lose that envelope.” Surprise, surprise, that’s what happens (though it’s more dramatic than just “lost photos”). I understand Trevor’s a fallible man with emotions that can sometimes cloud judgment. But as a detective, he undoubtedly knows better. He’s not a new law enforcement officer; you don’t become a detective on your second day.