Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Before She Disappeared by Lisa Gardner – A Book Review

Before She Disappeared by Lisa Gardner book cover

Before She Disappeared introduces us to Frankie Elkin, an ordinary woman and recovering alcoholic who has more regrets than belongings, more sad stories than happy ones. To cope with them, she has devoted her life to finding missing people the rest of the world has given up on. This seems too often to happen to minorities. 

When the police have given up, when the public no longer remembers, when the media has never bothered to care, Frankie starts looking. For no money, no recognition, and most of the time, no help. Why does she do it? 

Maybe the question shouldn't be why am I doing this, but why isn't everyone looking?

                                                        ~Frankie Elkin


Frankie gets her new cases from online research; from national chat rooms where family members and concerned neighbors compare notes on various missing persons cases. There are too many such cases for local resources to handle, so Frankie, and others like her, step into the vacuum. 

Before She Disappeared by Lisa Gardner book cover
Available now
on Amazon
Frankie's new case, the basis of this story, brings her to Mattapan, a Boston neighborhood with a rough reputation.  She is searching for Angelique Badeau, a Haitian teenager who vanished from her high school months earlier and has never been found. The Boston PD did search for Angel for awhile, but is just about convinced that she is basically a runaway who doesn't want to be found.  Angel's family believes differently.

As Frankie begins to ask questions, she discovers that someone doesn't want them answered. As she takes risks to discover the truth, Frankie might become the next person to go missing. 


Lisa Gardner has written 23 suspense novels to date, including this one just published in 2021. Her novels are well written and enjoyable to read.

*Reviewer's Note: Lisa Gardner, best-selling author of suspense novels in both her FBI Profiler Series and her D.D. Warren Series, appears to have begun a new series with this Frankie Elkin thriller.  Before She Disappeared is listed as a Frankie Elkin Novel Book 1.  One Step Too Far (a Frankie Elkin Novel Book 2) will be released on January 18, 2022. It is available for 'Pre-Order' here.

*More Reviews of Lisa Gardner Books on ReviewThisReviews.com

Book Review of "Before She Disappeared" written by 

~Wednesday Elf

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate, Ebay (EPN) and/or Esty (Awin) Affiliate, I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


  1. Thank you Pat for adding to my list of must read books. This thriller sounds like something I would really enjoy! My list seems to grow and grow, there are so many authors that I know I want to check out!

    1. You are welcome, Olivia. Always glad to keep you informed of authors and their latest books. Especially in the suspense & mystery genre - my favorite! :)

  2. Although thrillers are not a genre I generally enjoy, based on your review this one interests me. Great idea to have the heroine try to exorcise her demons by looking for missing individuals the police have given up on.

    1. Frankie turned out to be quite an interesting character, Margaret. You are right about her dedication in searching for missing people who have virtually been forgotten is her way of 'exorcising her demons'. It seems to be something she feels compelled to do. She certainly meets a lot of interesting people along the way.

  3. I would imagine this type of volunteer work would frequently lead into very dangerous territory. There would be no reason for someone to disappear unless a criminal is involved or the individual wishes to be "lost". Either way, interference wouldn't be appreciated, therefore the searcher could end up the next victim, especially since she has no backup or law enforcement authority. Sounds like it would have to be a very suspense filled book!

    1. Yes, Mouse, this work Frankie has dedicated herself to doing DOES seem to lead her into dangerous territory. Although she seems to find help (if reluctantly) from some police and from people she meets along the way who become protective of her.

  4. This book does sound very interesting. I have read Lisa Gardner before and enjoyed her writing style.

  5. Frankie does sound an interesting, complex character. Delving into this quite dangerous volunteer work comes or somewhere in her character and her story coping with such sadness and regrets. This fascinates me. Thank you for a great review.


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