An artist comes back from the dead to help catch her killer.
Addressing the reader with disconcerting directness, Claire Beaudry Chase explains that she’s died. This turns out to be a half-truth; she’s awakened after having been strangled and left for dead by a man in a black mask—whom she presumes to be Griffin, her husband. Claire is expected that evening at the Woodward-Lathrop Gallery for the opening of her new art exhibit, and when she doesn't arrive, Griffin, a Connecticut State’s Attorney and candidate for governor, shows appropriate concern. Conor Reid, a detective with the state police, is at the opening with his girlfriend, Kate Woodward, who owns the gallery, and his sister-in-law, Jackie, who runs it. Claire goes into hiding and slowly recovers, her belief in Griffin's guilt intensified by the memory of his girlfriend Ellen's suspicious suicide a generation ago. Meanwhile, Conor begins to investigate what happened to Claire the night of the opening. Claire’s revelations alternate with accounts of Conor’s probe and the investigation of a second mystery. A couple sailing on Long Island Sound discovers Dan Benson clinging to what’s left of his boat. His wife, Sallie, and their children, Gwen and Charlie, are missing. Chapters from Sallie’s perspective, leading up to the incident, are folded in. Rice front-loads the plot and introduces a daunting number of characters early on, but Claire’s absorbing narration keeps the story afloat until some important distinctions and connections become clearer. Once a link between the two stories is established, Conor’s probe proceeds quickly, aided by Jackie and eventually the resurrected Claire.
Rice’s compelling heroine and crisp prose lift her brisk thriller above the formulaic.
Rice’s compelling heroine and crisp prose lift her brisk thriller…” —Kirkus Reviews
“[A] gripping psychological thriller…Prepare to be up all night reading.” —Publishers Weekly
“Decades-old crimes lead to current murder in a case unwound through the efforts of strong women. With a core of appealing characters, bestselling author Rice—known for domestic fiction and romance—has the makings of a promising mystery series here.” —Booklist
“The Shadow Box is a heart-stopping yet enthralling breath of sea air, with as much dark beauty as one of Claire Beaudry Chase’s own shadow boxes. It’s also a resolute testimonial of inner strength, no matter how far from our plots and plans life takes us.” —The Big Thrill
“The Shadow Box is a captivating read as much for its illuminating portrayal of domestic disenchantment as for its requisite, and robustly handled, mystery elements. Ultimately, Luanne Rice has given us a deeply affecting meditation on how we both lose and find ourselves, proving once again that she’s a luminary in any, and all, literary realms of her choosing.” —Criminal Element
“The Shadow Box is Luanne Rice at her dazzling best. Filled with dark family secrets and wells of deep emotion, this novel will stick with you long after you’ve finished reading.” —Harlen Coben, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Run Away
“As always, Luanne Rice gives us characters so real they feel like family and families so flawed they give us chills. Shocking, compassionate, and told with the unerring eye of a true and gifted observer, The Shadow Box will keep you turning the pages long past your bedtime.” —Tami Hoag, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Boy
“A clever protagonist in extreme danger pitted against a cruel and powerful circle made the stakes in The Shadow Box so high I could barely stop reading for a drink of water. Luanne Rice creates a thrillingly compelling tale of common cruelty, high ambition, and the courage it takes to oppose them. Well done!” —Barbara O’Neal, Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author of When We Believed in Mermaids
“Every family has secrets, but in Luanne Rice’s clever thriller, The Shadow Box, the truth won’t set you free—it will put you in a shallow grave…particularly if you live in the posh Connecticut enclave of Catamount Bluffs, where corruption, kidnapping, and murder are only a few of the community’s hidden sins.” —Lee Goldberg, #1 New York Times bestselling author