Book Review: Vanish by Tess Gerristen

About the Book:


A blessed event becomes a nightmare for pregnant homicide detective Jane Rizzoli when she finds herself on the wrong side of a hostage crisis in this timely and relentless new thriller from the New Your Times bestselling author of Body Double.

A nameless, beautiful woman appears to be just another corpse in the morgue. An apparent suicide, she lies on a gurney awaiting the dissecting scalpel of medical examiner Maura Isles. But when Maura unzips the body bag and looks down as the body, she gets the fright of her life. The corpse opens it eyes.

Very much alive, the woman is rushed to the hospital, where, with shockingly cool precision, she murders a security guard and seizes hostages…one of them a pregnant patient, Jane Rizzoli.

Who is this violent, desperate soul, and what does she want? As the tense hours tick by, Maura joins forces with Jane’s husband, FBI agent Gabriel Dean, to track down the mysterious killer’s identity. When federal agents suddenly appear on the scene, Maura and Gabriel realize that they are dealing with a case that goes far deeper than just an ordinary hostage crisis.

Only Jane, trapped with the armed madwoman, holds the key to the mystery. And only she can solve it-if she survives the night.

More information about the author and the books she has written can be found on the following website:

My Thoughts:

This is the first book of Tess Gerristen’s that I have read. It has also been a while since I read a book in the mystery/thriller genre. This book was initially suggested by a friend as we were having a discussion related to the theme on which this book is based.

The story is precise and well written. The plot is simple and the story has a comfortable, satisfactory ending. The story is narrated partly in third person, which follows the present day events, and partly in first person, from Mila’s point of view. The story revolves around a woman who is brought to the morgue on the assumption that she is dead. However, the medical examiner happens to unzip the body and finds that the woman is alive. This then sparks off a series of events which suddenly become the most important news. Jane Rizzoli, homicide detective with the Boston PD (as I assume most fans of this author’s book may already know) and also pregnant is caught up right in the middle of a hostage situation. Jane is about to give birth and is stuck inside with the woman who miraculously didn’t die. On the other hand, we have Jane’s husband, Gabriel, an FBI agent and Maura, the Medical Examiner who found our Jane Doe, working from the outside to try to understand what is happening. It takes all of their combined efforts and skills to figure out what is actually happening.

Amidst all the chaos, it becomes apparent that there is more to the story than just a mere hostage situation, very much as the story’s blurb says. As you progress through the story, the author gives us insight into life through Mila’s life and she seamlessly brings together her life story with the present day situation. It feels as though every person we meet along the way is important in some way and Tess doesn’t disappoint when she brings everything together at the end.

The details and explanations are to the point and explained quite well so that even those from a non-medical background (like me! :P) can understand all the medical terms. This is a story that will make the reader gasp in shock in some places while it makes us sigh in happiness at others. The tone of the story is consistent and the events occur at a fast pace. There are no detours or unnecessary events occurring in this story. I am indeed inspired to read more books by Tess Gerristen and I hope that those of you out there who haven’t read her books yet will do so soon. For those of you who already know of her, and have read her books, I hope you enjoy my review and share your thoughts below this post!

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