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Vanished: A Novel | [Karen Robards]

Vanished: A Novel

Seven years ago, Sarah Mason's five-year-old daughter vanished during an outing at a park in Beaufort, South Carolina. Despite a frantic search, little Lexie was never found, and Sarah was left to pick up the pieces of her shattered life and go on the best she could. Then, one hot August night, Sarah comes home to hear the phone ringing. When she picks it up, a child's terrified voice whispers, "Mommy, help, come and get me . . ." The call is cut off, but not before Sarah's heart goes into overdrive.
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Publisher's Summary

Seven years ago, Sarah Mason's five-year-old daughter vanished during an outing at a park in Beaufort, South Carolina. Despite a frantic search, little Lexie was never found, and Sarah was left to pick up the pieces of her shattered life and go on the best she could.

Then, one hot August night, Sarah comes home to hear the phone ringing. When she picks it up, a child's terrified voice whispers, "Mommy, help, come and get me . . ." The call is cut off, but not before Sarah's heart goes into overdrive: she is sure the voice belonged to Lexie. Five-year-old Lexie. Though seven years have passed, she sounds exactly the same.

Frantic, Sarah turns to the police, the FBI, and her co-workers at the County Prosecutor's office, none of whom takes the call seriously. The only person she can count on to help her is Jake Hogan, her closest friend in the world, the man who has provided a strong shoulder for her to lean on throughout the long search. A former FBI agent, Jake is now a P.I., and though he is skeptical about the authenticity of the call, the attraction he feels for Sarah pushes him to help her. He is convinced someone is deliberately tormenting the grief-stricken mother.

Their long friendship explodes into a romance as they try to figure out who, and why - and what happened to Lexie. When the torment escalates to murder, Jake is the only one who can keep Sarah safe. Together, they are caught up in a nightmare search for Lexie that just might end with Sarah's death.

(P)2006 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (267 )
5 star
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3.8 (198 )
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  •  
    Simone 03-03-13
    Simone 03-03-13 Member Since 2015

    Member Since 2006!!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    631
    ratings
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    519
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    "I Am Torn!"

    I liked it in general, yet I was annoyed the whole way through.

    The scenes were SO LONG it made me wonder what the book was ultimately supposed to be about. A shooting at the convenience store? A kidnapping? A murder plot? A ghost story? A courtroom drama? A love story? WHAT!!!!! Plus there was WAAAAY TOOOO MUUUUCH emphasis on what everyone was wearing all the time. Ugh! Spare me! Who cares!

    I was never sure which tangent was the “a-story” and which one was the “b-story”. You kind of assume that if an author goes into that much detail and spends that much time on any given scene it’s because it matters and has a direct link to the main story, but in this book I was never sure about the ultimate plot. It felt like a little bit of everything and a whole lot of nothing.

    The ending felt stereotypically silly - yet I doubt anything would have pleased me by that point! Still, I cared enough about the characters to see how it all would end up. I was curious (to various degrees) about all the storylines so I suppose I have to give it a pass!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katherine 01-29-13
    Katherine 01-29-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great read!"

    The story of a mom who can't give up on her missing daughter was one that caught my attention from the beginning. Narrator Joyce Bean did a good job on this. My only complaint is that the story is resolved too quickly. The whys are answered over lots of pages and all of a sudden, here's the end. It's almost as if an editor decided the book was getting too long and had the conclusion down to a few pages.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sarah SOUTHFIELD, MICHIGAN, United States 12-27-12
    Sarah SOUTHFIELD, MICHIGAN, United States 12-27-12 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Too many details"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I find myself wanting to get it over with...


    What was most disappointing about Karen Robards’s story?

    The main charachter Sarah with her emotions...I understand how she would be upset but it was just never ending back and forth. Too many details made the story really drag.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Joyce Bean?

    Yes...she did horrible with the male voices...I agree with another listener when she said it sounded like a old woman who was a chain smoker instead of a sexy PI.


    Was Vanished: A Novel worth the listening time?

    It wasn't bad but I probably won't listen to it again.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandra 12-20-12
    Sandra 12-20-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Increadible ending"
    Any additional comments?

    There were a few places where information was repeated, but the overall story was great. The ending was fantastic! Hair standing on end, thrilling!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ron Airdrie, Alberta, Canada 12-20-12
    Ron Airdrie, Alberta, Canada 12-20-12
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    Story
    "False advertising!"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Someone wanting to read about how 2 best friends ( may) become lovers.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Karen Robards again?

    Not unless I red some rave reviews. Not sure how many ways " broad shoulders" can be described, but this book talks to at least 20 of them


    What three words best describe Joyce Bean’s performance?

    Good Georgia cent


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Vanished: A Novel?

    I am only 2/3 way through, but I would cut all reference to the " vanished" person. It has not, as of yet, had any real bearing on the story


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christine Myrtle Beach, SC, United States 12-14-12
    Christine Myrtle Beach, SC, United States 12-14-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Should have been abridged"
    Would you try another book from Karen Robards and/or Joyce Bean?

    no, all the details made it kind of boring at times


    What did you like best about this story?

    the story was good, just very drawn out with lots of needless details


    What didn’t you like about Joyce Bean’s performance?

    her voice as Jake, made him sound like old man


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ann United States 12-01-12
    Ann United States 12-01-12 Member Since 2010

    Seeking the Truth

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Avoid "Vanished" .... Please!"

    First of all, do not get this "Vanished" mixed up with the excellent book also entitled "Vanished" but written by Joseph Finder; they are not of the same subject or quality. "Vanished" as written by Karen Robards is not unique in any way, and I do not recommend it.

    Ms. Robards' "Vanished" is the very over-used story about every parent's nightmare; a woman's six-year-old daughter vanishes in a busy park and is never found. But 10 years after the girl's disappearance, the Mother begins to receive strange phone calls from her long-gone daughter, wanting to come home. The Mother, of course, panics and begans frantically looking for her little girl. At this point, the story starts going downhill quickly; for example, It's immediately apparent to the reader that the calls could not possibly be from the daughter. The voice on the phone sounds like a typical six-year-old child, but the reader is thinking: WAIT; wouldn't the daughter be 16 or 17 now and presumably not still have the same baby voice and lisp that the Mother's six year old had when she first disappeared? Someone finally figures that out, but not until a lot of panicky scenes have occurred and not until the reader has became a little agitated at being treated like an idiot.

    But the real tragedy occurs not with the very trite subject but with the narrator. Joyce Bean does an excellent job when she stays in the voice of female characters. However, in the audiobook, when Ms. Bean first starts growling out the voice of her supposed male lover, I laughed, then cringed, then was rather creeped out. Her boyfriend, as voiced by Ms. Bean, sounds exactly like a cranky old woman, a life-long smoker with a resulting scratchy throat. At first it wasn't much of a problem listening to Ms. Bean trying to make her voice sound an octave deeper than it could actually go, but it was a Big Problem during the "romance" scenes: since we cannot "see" the sexy scenes, all we can picture in our minds are a young woman and a grouchy old cigarette-smoking old lady with male genitalia. And, no, I am not homophobic or transgender-phobic, and I usually have little problem with a female reading a man's part in an audiobook. But Joyce Bean needs to stick with narration of female characters only (and at which she is very good), and the author needs to quite trying save a buck by not hiring both a male and a female for naration of her romance novels.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Colleen Home 06-29-13
    Colleen Home 06-29-13 Member Since 2010

    I cannot live without books ~ Thomas Jefferson

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Sammie from Bozeman Hit The Nail on the Head"
    What disappointed you about Vanished: A Novel?

    Everything from writing style to character development to narration.


    What could Karen Robards have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Not elaborate on insignificant, mundane so-called details


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Joyce Bean?

    Julia Whelan or Cassandra Campbell or virtually any other female narrator.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Anger for having wasted money, impatience waiting for the story to get better, frustration for it never getting better.


    Any additional comments?

    I couldn't agree more with the review provided by Sammie from Bozeman.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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