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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 (248 )
5 star
 (71)
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 (100)
3 star
 (52)
2 star
 (12)
1 star
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Overall
3.8 (180 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
 (39)
2 star
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1 star
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Story
3.9 (182 )
5 star
 (58)
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Performance
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  •  
    Valerie El Mirage, AZ, United States 02-03-11
    Valerie El Mirage, AZ, United States 02-03-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    10
    2
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    Overall
    "Great listen"

    This is the first book I listened to by Karen Robards and I couldn't put it down. A credit well spent. I will definitely buy more from her library.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nyoka Brownstown, MI, United States 04-15-12
    Nyoka Brownstown, MI, United States 04-15-12 Member Since 2011

    Nyoka Mullins

    HELPFUL VOTES
    42
    ratings
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    145
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    "Outstanding"

    I found this book to be a tear dropper and I could feel the pain for the Mother, I know it's only a book, but I found myself being in the same position, it's like I was there in the book. Good one, I recommend it.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ed Saint Augustine, FL, United States 01-10-13
    Ed Saint Augustine, FL, United States 01-10-13 Member Since 2006

    Retired former magazine editor who is working harder than ever as Mr. Dad to his 11-year-old daughter.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2285
    ratings
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    405
    214
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    Story
    "Average story that will pass the time"

    This tale was predictable and replete with an interesting cast of characters. It was not too difficult to figure out where the story was going but its predictability did not really detract from the listen. A few of the minor characters were a stretch but nonetheless interesting. The story ended where one would anticipate it ending. If you are need of a relaxing listen, this book may be for you.

    7 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sammie Bozeman, MT, United States 02-16-13
    Sammie Bozeman, MT, United States 02-16-13 Member Since 2011

    -sam

    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    "Needs a good editing"

    I'm only partway through the book; at the point of trying to decide if I'm going to continue or not.

    The writing suffers from an abundance of non-essential details, and the author uses three descriptors where one would have been sufficient. I'm a dog person, and even I found her multiple descriptions of Sweetie Pie tedious. And, I'm starting to count the number of times she uses "the thing is".

    I would have been much happier if the narrator had used her normal voice for the character "Jake" -- her growly, constricted voice has me hating the guy.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Teresa Oneco, FL, United States 12-12-12
    Teresa Oneco, FL, United States 12-12-12 Member Since 2010

    I enjoy listening to great detective mysterie & also great thrillers. I enjoy books also by Vince Flynn, David Baldaci including assasins.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
    ratings
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    63
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    Story
    "A GREAT story with a GREAT ending."
    What made the experience of listening to Vanished: A Novel the most enjoyable?

    It was a mystery, romance and some thriller all in one.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The author brought the plot and the character all in a full circle. A very smooth but yet mysterious journey.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Saving Sweet Pea from the gator!!


    Any additional comments?

    A great author. This was my first. I will listen to more of Karen Robard's books.

    1 of 1 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
    134
    ratings
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    21
    19
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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 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    SCK IL 10-08-13
    SCK IL 10-08-13 Member Since 2012
    ratings
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    29
    5
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    Performance
    Story
    "Not worth the credit or my time"
    Would you be willing to try another one of Joyce Bean’s performances?

    No thank you


    Any additional comments?

    The story was okay. Seemed like 25% of the book was full of meaningless details. The narrators character voices were AWFUL!! I cringed when she started talking, and hoped it would grow on me or I would at least get use to it as I listened longer. Terrible...terrible...terrible.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    L. York, PA, United States 08-26-13
    L. York, PA, United States 08-26-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    10
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    2
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    "Entertaining but ending not quite satisfying"

    I found the story to be entertaining and it kept me listening to the very end. However I found the ending seemed to be clipped short. The story had very great detail in almost everything except when it came to the ending. I don't like loose ends. There should have been an epilogue or something to give a more satisfying look into what happened after the fact. I did enjoy it over all but would not be a read over (or listen over) as some books are.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Ann St. Louis, MO, USA 04-08-13
    Mary Ann St. Louis, MO, USA 04-08-13 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    64
    22
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    1
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    "A Sad Bodice Ripper"
    Any additional comments?

    The book's heroine is deep in grief. Her colleague is in love with her. I listened to find out what happened to the little girl, but even that plot didn't hold together too well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Simone St Laurent, Quebec, Canada 03-03-13
    Simone St Laurent, Quebec, Canada 03-03-13 Member Since 2006

    Join me on GoodReads too!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    369
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    427
    293
    FOLLOWERS
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    54
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    Story
    "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
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