When two girls go missing without a trace, it's up to Detective Vega to do the impossible and bring them home.
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Why I love it
Louisa Luna amps up the fear with the first line of her lightning-charged new thriller, Two Girls Down. The hackles on my back went up as I read, "Jamie Brandt wasn’t a bad mother." Oh no—not a bad mother and what happened? Being a good mother is all about second chances but with one wrong move, the possibility of a second chance can be destroyed forever. During the five minutes it takes Jamie to dash into a Kmart, her two young daughters disappear. Jamie has broken one of the cardinal rules of motherhood by leaving her girls alone in a car and now she’ll have to pay with a lifetime of pain and regret.
Can no one help her? The local cops in her small Pennsylvania town are understaffed, overwhelmed by the opioid epidemic, and incapable of finding "their asshole with a mirror and a flashlight." Extraordinary and necessary action comes in the form of a bounty hunter from California. From the moment Alice Vega enters the scene, everything—the pace of the hunt, the emotions of the family, the thrills and the chills for the reader, the fear and the danger for everyone—gets ramped up to a higher, and then even higher notch, and the race never lets up until the very last page. Two Girls Down is a thriller set at warp speed. Every minute of it will get your heart pumping, your mind careening, and your legs twitching, ready to join in the action.
Vega is tough, young enough to remember what it felt like to be a lost girl (and as we learn, once she was a very lost girl) and old enough to know the only way out is to fight hard, and to fight smart. Almost mythical in her ability to exist on little food and even less sleep, Vega also has an uncanny sense of what bad guys do and where they go to hide. Whether looking for a "skip" (someone who has jumped bail) or a missing child, Vega’s tuned in and focused, intent on her quarry and relentless in her pursuit. Trained in meditation, she uses it not to find inner calm but to find the bad guy. For Vega, "there was never peace when she closed her eyes. There was always, always a fight."
Vega is no loner. She knows she needs help to stalk and capture her prey. A tech whiz who goes by the name of OMGBastard does her online hacking and on the ground, Vega calls in the help of a local ex-cop who left the force under an undeserved cloud of misconduct and failure. Max Caplan and Vega are a good team but they both know time is running out. They follow up every lead, every hint, every possibility—and the hunt becomes deeply personal for both. With enough twists to keep every reader guessing until the very end, and more heart-stopping moments than the scariest roller coaster, Two Girls Down will keep you up and amped, emotionally invested and physically bound to the fate of the two sisters and their mother. After all, Jamie is not a bad mother—and with Vega and Caplan’s help, she might be lucky enough to get a second chance at being a good one.
As addictive, cinematic, and binge-worthy a narrative as The Wire and The Killing, Two Girls Down is a bold new thriller from a writer of immense talent and verve.
When two young sisters disappear from a strip mall parking lot in a small Pennsylvania town, their devastated mother hires an enigmatic bounty hunter, Alice Vega, to help find the girls. Immediately shut out by a local police department already stretched thin by budget cuts and the growing OxyContin and meth epidemic, Vega enlists the help of a disgraced former cop, Max Caplan. Cap is a man trying to put the scandal of his past behind him and move on, but Vega needs his help to find the girls, and she will not be denied.
With little to go on, Vega and Cap will go to extraordinary lengths to untangle a dangerous web of lies, false leads, and complex relationships to find the girls before time runs out, and they are gone forever.
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Beaverton , OR
Couldn’t put it down! I read all night. Enjoyed Luna’s writing style & character development. The flow of the investigation was interesting & I found myself hopeful for Vega & Cap on a personal level.
Hartsdale , NY
It was a slow start but as you read it gets more interesting. The characters are good . Caps daughter Nell is a great character, she’s brught, funny and cared about her dad. Vega is a fiesty characteR
This book is well written and keeps you in suspense up until the very end. I enjoyed reading it. There were parts that were so vivid (for me) that I gasped out aloud or played the scene out in my head
Shelton , WA
OH MY GOD! I love love loved this book! I stayed up all night reading it. I couldn't put it down! And when I did, begrudgingly, put it down, I just thought of it. Where are the girls? Are they alive?!
Alice Vega, known for being able to find missing children, is called to locate 2 missing girls. She works with ex-cop, Cap, in this psychologically thrilling novel. I sure hope that there's a sequel!
Jacksonville , FL
I finished this book in one day and couldn’t put it down. It had a strong female lead which I loved and I felt the two main characters fit very well together. I would love to see more of Alice Vega!
I have recommended this book to anybody in my family that would listen to me ramble on about it. Unfortunately im one of about three serious readers in a family of over 60. Oh well, theyre missing out
Kept my fingers turning the pages to see how the female bounty hunter find the 2 girls who were abducted. A strong but slightly demented protagatist. She goes through possibilities full speed. Hold on
Las Vegas, NV
Absolutely loved this novel! I couldn't put it down. Beyond glad I couldn't solve this one myself. The characters amazed me and kept this story running through my mind after I finished. Well done,Luna
i loved this book and will look for other books by louisa luna. I thought it was fast moving and i didn't want to put it down. I thought i had it all figured out but i was wrong. great book ..thank
I found myself having to get up at night to find out what was happening with Vega and Cap. Been a long time since I enjoyed a book like this. I think it needs to be edited a bit (too many 'she said')
This book had me enthralled from the beginning. I couldn't wait to keep reading. There were just the right amount of twist and turns. Although, there was one thing I wish would have been visited more!
Lubbock , TX
Fast read I think. I wanted to know what Vega has up her sleve next in her search to find the girls! I truly thought it was just as good as a tv show with same plot! Will re read it, it’s that good!
Sherman Oaks, CA
An easy suspenseful thriller to read on a weekend morning, drinking coffee in a cozy chair. Sometimes it was a bit slow but I definitely didn't see the end coming. Cap and Vega were delightful leads!
Virginia Beach, VA
The twist and turns this book produced are still giving me whiplash hours after finishing it! Such a good book and just when you think you’ve figured it out NOPE another foot drops! So so so good!
Two Girls Down is a fast paced read. When I had thought I knew the answers, it changed on me. Louisa Luna did a great job of keeping the reader guessing until the end. Would make a good series.
Reels you in from the beginning: "Jamie Brandt was not a bad mother." Badass female protagonist who heads up an investigation for two missing girls and gets things done. Can't help but root for her.
Loved this book! Lots of twist & turns. Clues that link together, leads that look promising, & a surprise ending. Similar to true crime cases with great leads but different surprising culprits! 5/5
albuquerque , NM
Great book. The suspense it brings, doesn't allow you to set the book down. The ending made me a little mad. I wanted to know a bit more about the romance that unrevealed a little towards the end.
Chicago , IL
A tell of a good thriller is that you shouldn't be able to guess all the twists & turns, and this book did not disappoint + a healthy dose of likeable/relatable/well-developed lead detectives! YES!