• The Taken Ones

  • A Novel (Steinbeck and Reed, Book 1)
  • By: Jess Lourey
  • Narrated by: Carly Robins
  • Length: 10 hrs and 31 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (707 ratings)

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The Taken Ones  By  cover art

The Taken Ones

By: Jess Lourey
Narrated by: Carly Robins
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Publisher's summary

Two girls vanished. A woman buried alive. Between two crimes lie decades of secrets yet to be unearthed in a pulse-pounding novel by the Edgar Award-nominated author of Unspeakable Things.

Summer 1980: Despite the local superstition that the Bendy Man haunts the woods, three girls go into a Minnesota forest. Only one comes out, dead silent, her memory gone. The mystery of the Taken Ones captures the nation.

Summer 2022: Cold case detective Van Reed and forensic scientist Harry Steinbeck are assigned a disturbing homicide—a woman buried alive, clutching a heart charm necklace belonging to one of the vanished girls. Van follows her gut. Harry trusts in facts. They’re both desperate to catch a killer before he kills again. They have something else in common: each has ties to the original case in ways they’re reluctant to share.

As Van and Harry connect the crimes of the past and the present, Van struggles with memories of her own nightmarish childhood—and the fear that uncovering the truth of the Taken Ones will lead her down a path from which she, too, may never return.

©2023 Jess Lourey. (P)2023 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

Critic reviews

“Narrator Carly Robins ramps up the tension, portraying Van's increasingly fraught state as things hit uncomfortably close to home. Lourey (The Quarry Girls) skillfully uses flashbacks and changes in perspective to create a deeply suspenseful listening experience. Share with fans of mysteries and suspense involving intriguing women detectives who employ a hint of the supernatural.”Library Journal

“Twists and turns you don’t see coming make for a real page-turner.”Kirkus Reviews

“There are twists and turns galore that make reading this novel almost unbearably fun and intense. I cannot remember another psychological thriller that created such a dichotomy of feelings about the protagonist, which shows just how talented Jess Lourey is.”Publishers Weekly