How It Happened by Michael Koryta
Rob Barrett has been brought in by the FBI to work two missing persons cases up in Maine; he is familiar with the area and his skill set is perfect for his first case. He is an expert in interrogation and there is a witness that has let slip at the local bar that the couple who are missing were actually murdered and she knows where the bodies are hidden because she helped put them in their watery grave. Rob spends weeks trying to get information out of the witness, Kimberly Crepeaux, and is convinced he’ll have the case wrapped up as soon as the explicit directions Kimberly gives to the bodies is followed. But many of the locals refuse to believe the ramblings of a notorious jailhouse snitch and drug addict. Rob knows in his heart that Kimberly is telling the truth but when the bodies aren’t found where she says they will be but are instead found hundreds of miles away in completely different circumstances all is cast into doubt. Rob is not done with the investigation despite what his superiors tell him. His first case may be his last.
Mystery fans will enjoy puzzling out all the facets of this one. The motives are unclear and murky; as Rob learns more about the area of Maine he summered in as a child and the effect drugs are having on the community things become even more clouded. As a reader it’s like you’re working alongside Rob and you feel every dead end and twist as if you were led astray as well. Best of all everything makes sense but, naturally, only once you have all the pieces.
The audiobook starts with Kimberly’s confession read by an extremely talented female actor until the narrative switches to an equally talented male reader. Her words stay with you for the whole story and just like Rob, you can’t help but believe her even though all the evidence shows that she is lying.