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This pulse-pounding series debut is the next obsession for fans of Julia Keller and David Bell, and readers of unflinching thrillers. Sometimes, the journey home is the most harrowing. And it’s every parent’s worst nightmare. Investigative journalist Laura Chambers is back in her tiny hometown of Hillsborough, North Carolina, the one place she swore never to return. Fired fr This pulse-pounding series debut is the next obsession for fans of Julia Keller and David Bell, and readers of unflinching thrillers. Sometimes, the journey home is the most harrowing. And it’s every parent’s worst nightmare. Investigative journalist Laura Chambers is back in her tiny hometown of Hillsborough, North Carolina, the one place she swore never to return. Fired from the Boston Globe, her career in shambles, she reluctantly takes a job with the local paper. The work is simple, unimportant, and worst of all, boring―at least until a missing girl turns up dead, the body impeccably clean, dressed to be the picture of innocence. Years earlier, ten-year-old Patty Finch left home and never made it back. But for the people of Hillsborough, Patty was just the beginning. Child after child disappeared, a reign of terror the town desperately wants to forget. Now that terror has returned to seize another girl. And another. And another. This is the story Laura’s been waiting for―her one last chance to get back onto the front page. She dives deeper into a case that runs colder by the second, only to discover the truth may be far closer to home than she could have ever imagined. Powerful, intricate, and tense, Last Girl Gone will have you looking over your shoulder long after the last page.


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This pulse-pounding series debut is the next obsession for fans of Julia Keller and David Bell, and readers of unflinching thrillers. Sometimes, the journey home is the most harrowing. And it’s every parent’s worst nightmare. Investigative journalist Laura Chambers is back in her tiny hometown of Hillsborough, North Carolina, the one place she swore never to return. Fired fr This pulse-pounding series debut is the next obsession for fans of Julia Keller and David Bell, and readers of unflinching thrillers. Sometimes, the journey home is the most harrowing. And it’s every parent’s worst nightmare. Investigative journalist Laura Chambers is back in her tiny hometown of Hillsborough, North Carolina, the one place she swore never to return. Fired from the Boston Globe, her career in shambles, she reluctantly takes a job with the local paper. The work is simple, unimportant, and worst of all, boring―at least until a missing girl turns up dead, the body impeccably clean, dressed to be the picture of innocence. Years earlier, ten-year-old Patty Finch left home and never made it back. But for the people of Hillsborough, Patty was just the beginning. Child after child disappeared, a reign of terror the town desperately wants to forget. Now that terror has returned to seize another girl. And another. And another. This is the story Laura’s been waiting for―her one last chance to get back onto the front page. She dives deeper into a case that runs colder by the second, only to discover the truth may be far closer to home than she could have ever imagined. Powerful, intricate, and tense, Last Girl Gone will have you looking over your shoulder long after the last page.

30 review for Last Girl Gone

  1. 5 out of 5

    James

    Starting off this review by saying it's right around 4.5 stars for this one... Everyone once in a while, a writer truly catches you off guard with either a story arc or a plot twist. It's especially powerful when it's a new writer you've not experienced before. And that's what happened when I picked up Last Girl Gone: A Laura Chambers Mystery by J.G. Hetherton after it was provided to me earlier this year by the publisher, Crooked Lane. Laura Chambers, a reporter who's been fired from a big-time Starting off this review by saying it's right around 4.5 stars for this one... Everyone once in a while, a writer truly catches you off guard with either a story arc or a plot twist. It's especially powerful when it's a new writer you've not experienced before. And that's what happened when I picked up Last Girl Gone: A Laura Chambers Mystery by J.G. Hetherton after it was provided to me earlier this year by the publisher, Crooked Lane. Laura Chambers, a reporter who's been fired from a big-time Boston paper for doing something bad, is the main character in this suspense thriller series. Eventually we find out what happened, and all I have to say is... yikes, we better revisit that story as it doesn't feel like it's quite over yet. She returns home to a North Carolina town where she has been working at a local paper for about a month. She's being treated poorly by a real jerk of a colleague, has a horrific mother, and now a serial killer is fascinated by her reporting. But it doesn't start there... we open with a young girl being kidnapped nearly 40 years earlier, then we figure out we're decades forward in Laura's story. It's connected somehow, but it takes 2/3 of the book to get there. And when it does, you'll definitely enjoy the connection. But trust me, that's only the beginning! For some reason, this book really talked to me. I felt Laura's pain given how everyone treats her (tho she can give back with full force). Writing quality is strong. I'm not sure how much I particularly like Laura, or understand why she is still living at home / tolerates her mother (other than money), but I'm hoping it'll get fleshed out in the next book in the series. The book has a bit of everything and quickly pulls you into the action. It also ends with a bang and a very twisted story. It's the perfect genre with an out-there-over-the-cliff-edge plot, yet I totally see it happening in a weird sorta way one day. I look forward to reading more from the author. He builds creepy characters and creates rousing suspense, especially when Laura goes after the killer basically on her own. And the title is such a play on words -- always like seeing that when the book is over and being analyzed. Kudos and thanks to Crooked Lanes for sending me this book. Definite spot-on read for me!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Melisa

    A definite pulse pounder! JG Hetheron has written a nail biter of a thriller set in a small North Carolina town. When journalist Laura Chambers returns back to her roots in NC after failing at a Boston newspaper, she stumbles upon a story that could set her career on fire - in a good way. But what price will she have to pay? This one was a little different than my usual reads - I tend to stick to the psychological variety of thrillers but this was more along the lines of darker crime. And I have t A definite pulse pounder! JG Hetheron has written a nail biter of a thriller set in a small North Carolina town. When journalist Laura Chambers returns back to her roots in NC after failing at a Boston newspaper, she stumbles upon a story that could set her career on fire - in a good way. But what price will she have to pay? This one was a little different than my usual reads - I tend to stick to the psychological variety of thrillers but this was more along the lines of darker crime. And I have to say I’m really glad I stepped outside my comfort zone and read this one. It was fraught with tension and full of terrifying situations that made my palms sweat and my heart pound. Did it make me a bit uncomfortable? Yes. But like I’ve been saying for awhile now - I really think it’s the power of good writing if it can evoke a strong emotional response from you in any manner whether it be fear, anxiety or joy. And this one definitely made me anxious and fearful! I most certainly did not solve this crime. I think my detective shoes are going to have to be retired. And I love it! A big thank you to Crooked Lane for my advance copy. This book is available now.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Susanne Strong

    5 Suspenseful Stars! Absolutely phenomenal! Without a doubt “Last Girl Gone” is one of the best mysteries I’ve read all year. Laura Chambers is a small town reporter. She didn’t used to be. She used to work for the Globe. The Boston Globe. Then her career tanked and just like that she hightailed it back home to Hillsborough, North Carolina to work for her hometown paper. Her days were filled with endless monotony until a young girl goes missing and is found murdered and Laura is the first person 5 Suspenseful Stars! Absolutely phenomenal! Without a doubt “Last Girl Gone” is one of the best mysteries I’ve read all year. Laura Chambers is a small town reporter. She didn’t used to be. She used to work for the Globe. The Boston Globe. Then her career tanked and just like that she hightailed it back home to Hillsborough, North Carolina to work for her hometown paper. Her days were filled with endless monotony until a young girl goes missing and is found murdered and Laura is the first person to write about it. Once Laura does her research she realizes that this isn’t the first time young girls’ bodies have been found in Hillsborough. Laura is sure there is a link. Is she right? She knows this story could put her back on the map, what she doesn’t know is how dangerous it is, for her and everyone else. “Last Girl Gone” by J. G. Hetherton is well written and suspenseful mystery with characters whose lives I was instantaneously drawn into, until I couldn’t get enough. The pacing of this novel is pure perfection and there is absolutely no filler. Every morsel of this story fits together perfectly, with the ending leaving you breathless. I received this ARC from Crooked Lane Books and was so glad I accepted, as it is hands down my favorite of any book they have published so far. Thank you to Ashley at Crooked Lane Books and to J. G. Hetherton for the complimentary copy! Published on Goodreads, Twitter and Amazon on 6.27.18.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Mackenzie - PhDiva Books

    A fantastic debut novel and an exciting start to a new series! I am drawn to books with a journalist as the lead because I think journalists are a great mix of detective and every-day person—and isn’t that all of our dream?? Laura Chambers is the lead character in what has been promised as a new series (they are calling this Laura Chambers #1 so I made the assumption) and she is a truly wonderful lead. She’s bold, uninhibited, vulnerable, driven, and empathetic. Just a truly wonderful mix of trai A fantastic debut novel and an exciting start to a new series! I am drawn to books with a journalist as the lead because I think journalists are a great mix of detective and every-day person—and isn’t that all of our dream?? Laura Chambers is the lead character in what has been promised as a new series (they are calling this Laura Chambers #1 so I made the assumption) and she is a truly wonderful lead. She’s bold, uninhibited, vulnerable, driven, and empathetic. Just a truly wonderful mix of traits and Laura is a character I really connected with. I thought I’d enjoy this book, but it surpassed me expectations! Laura Chambers is down on her luck... Laura is back in her hometown in Hillsborough, North Carolina—a town she hoped she had left behind for good after high school. Working for the local paper is a big setback for Laura’s career—following an incident working for the Boston Globe, Laura had nowhere else to turn. At the local paper, Laura is bored and finds herself stuck with a toxic male journalist coworker, covering tax changes and weather events. Things may be looking up... Laura's career may be taking a turn again when she finds herself in the middle of an intriguing case that has national news written all over it. Two girls have gone missing from Hillsborough, and one has been found murdered. The fate of the two girls is terrifying in its own right, but the town is particularly on edge because it reminds them of a string of girls who went missing—some of whom were found murdered—back in the 1980s. A killer dubbed by the media as The Kid was never located. Is The Kid back? Laura takes her shot... Laura knows that this case is her chance of getting back out of Hillsborough. And she’s lucky to be “seeing” a local deputy—the attractive Frank Stuart. As Laura balances her relationship with Frank and her interest in learning what leads the police find on the case, she struggles to get to the bottom of the case before another girl is taken or murdered. Digging deep into the town archives, Laura finds herself wondering about the connection between the two sets of kidnappings and murders. But before she can get too far, Laura suddenly finds herself to be the target of the Killer’s interest… Can Laura find the killer before she finds herself the next victim?? Reflection I was shocked to learn this is a debut book by this author, because this book is so polished and well-developed. The town of Hillsborough and its residents are very important to the story, and J. G. Hetherton described them so well. The residents love of the local police, their disdain for anyone (such as Laura) who tried to leave, their conviction that what happens in their town is safe, and it is only outsiders that cause problems—all of these tidbits made the book feel so authentic. Laura is in a tough position because the townspeople feel that she has rejected them. By leaving, Laura has shown them that she wants more than what they have settled for in life, and she struggles to reintegrate now that things have gone south in Boston. This is also a book filled with strong females. Though not all of the female characters in this book are likeable or good people, they nevertheless have a theme of strength running through them—where they do not allow themselves to be defined by their relationship to the males in their lives. The male characters really ranged in their presentation. There were the good ol’ boys, the ones trying to make a difference, and the ones who were toxic males. I liked that Hetherton put so much thought into his characters for this book. All of the main and supporting characters had some depth to them. Laura’s mother, for instance, is horrible so much of the time, but then just when you want to write her off she has a moment of truth. She is able to tell Laura something about herself that while tough to hear, is important for Laura to know. I would recommend this book to mystery and thriller lovers. I liked that it was not a police procedural, but still had elements of that genre. I think it will appeal to a variety of readers for that reason. The case itself is also interesting and heartbreaking. As a small trigger-warning, there are a few descriptions of the murders/victims/bodies that suggest at some dark aspects to this killer. Nothing is too graphic in my opinion, but I do want to put that warning out there. Thank you so much to J. G. Hetheron, NetGalley, and Crooked Lane Books for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review. Also see my review here!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    The dog that lost the fox is twice as eager to please. Laura Chambers is going back to the familiar. Destination: Hillsborough, North Carolina. Like the above-mentioned dog, Laura seems to have tucked the tail after being fired from the Boston Globe for some unprofessional behavior. With not many options in sight, this once successful investigative journalist takes a job working at the local paper. Smaller towns don't usually avail themselves to big headlines. That may all change when a missing g The dog that lost the fox is twice as eager to please. Laura Chambers is going back to the familiar. Destination: Hillsborough, North Carolina. Like the above-mentioned dog, Laura seems to have tucked the tail after being fired from the Boston Globe for some unprofessional behavior. With not many options in sight, this once successful investigative journalist takes a job working at the local paper. Smaller towns don't usually avail themselves to big headlines. That may all change when a missing girl's body shows up in a field. Laura finds herself on the perimeter of the crime scene. There's quite the bloodhound in our girl Laura as she picks up a clue that has been overlooked by the police farther up the field. Is there a connection to other missing girls over the years in this county? Laura aims to find out. J.G. Hetherton creates his main character of Laura Chambers as more detective-in-the-making who hasn't had the opportunity quite yet to show off her journalistic skills. Laura is very demonstrative and shoots straight from the hip in many, many ways. Hetherton puts her in several situations in which she must override some extremely high levels of testosterone percolating in the newsroom and elsewhere. Laura is hardly one who perches in a nest of warm fuzzies. She's had a rough childhood and returns to live with an obnoxiously overbearing mother. Note to Laura: Hope you purchased a one-way ticket back to Boston, Honey. This is a hard as nails town starting with Mommy Dearest. Hetherton brings in the psychology behind this killer and his possible motives. The crimes are explicit and their descriptions detailed. Some mystery/thrillers like Hetherton ratchet it up a few notches for realism. The ending twists left and then right with a bit of whiplash served. It may or may not satisfy all readers, but it does guarantee a wild bumpy road in the process. From the title, it appears that this is the first book in the Laura Chambers Mysteries. Let's just see what mischief that Hetherton cooks up for Laura in the next one. Perhaps send Mommy to Miami for the winter. Just know.....I'm in. I received a copy of this book through Crooked Lane Publishers for an honest review. My thanks to them and to J.G. Hetherton for the opportunity.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Carrie

    Last Girl Gone by J.G. Hetherton is the first book of the new Laura Chambers Mystery series. Laura Chambers is a journalist that had to return to her hometown of Hillsborough, North Carolina to take a job at the small town paper after being first from her job in Boston. With nothing but fluff pieces available Laura is just waiting for something worthwhile to write. Suddenly the small town experiences a tragedy when the body of a young girl is found in a field having been washed and posed and anot Last Girl Gone by J.G. Hetherton is the first book of the new Laura Chambers Mystery series. Laura Chambers is a journalist that had to return to her hometown of Hillsborough, North Carolina to take a job at the small town paper after being first from her job in Boston. With nothing but fluff pieces available Laura is just waiting for something worthwhile to write. Suddenly the small town experiences a tragedy when the body of a young girl is found in a field having been washed and posed and another girl has gone missing yet to be found. Laura begs to be able to be the one to write the front page story and is given a deadline to go out and find out more about the girls. Last Girl Gone was one of those books that on the surface will check all the boxes for thriller fans. The writing is solid and easy to read, the characters good, the setting and a crime to draw in readers.But then we come to the pacing which to me was a rather slow burn and that will make some happy but I’m not a huge fan myself. Sure there was action and twists but also areas that drag after a very slow start so in the end this one just turned out to be an OK read for me that lacked the promised “pulse pounding”. I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley. For more review please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/

  7. 5 out of 5

    Linda Strong

    It started with the disappearance of a ten-year-old girl 20+ years ago. This little girl had tried 3 times to run away from an abusive home. Something had gone wrong each time, until evidently it worked. She wasn't the last girl to have gone missing over the years. No one knew there was a serial killer roaming their neighborhoods. Present day -- Investigative Journalist Laura Chambers is back in her home town after swearing she'd never be back again. Unfortunately after being fired from her last It started with the disappearance of a ten-year-old girl 20+ years ago. This little girl had tried 3 times to run away from an abusive home. Something had gone wrong each time, until evidently it worked. She wasn't the last girl to have gone missing over the years. No one knew there was a serial killer roaming their neighborhoods. Present day -- Investigative Journalist Laura Chambers is back in her home town after swearing she'd never be back again. Unfortunately after being fired from her last job, she had no where else to go. Now working for the local newspaper, she has hopes of getting back into the 'real' world of reporting. A missing girl turns up dead .. and then another. This is the story Laura’s been waiting for―her one last chance to get back onto the front page. She dives deeper into a case that runs colder by the second, only to discover the truth may be far closer to home than she could have ever imagined. Very well written, this psychological thriller will have you hanging on to every twist and turn. Just when you think you know where it's going, the author yanks you in another direction altogether. Surprises hide behind every dark corner. This is a debut novel, the beginning of what promises to be an exciting series. Many thanks to the author / Crooked Lane Books for the advanced digital copy of this Psychological Thriller. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Maureen

    Wow! Great first book in a new series from J.G. Hetherton! This one kept me reading quickly to find out what would happen next. A serial killer has been targeting young girls. The killings began in 1988. Laura Chambers, an investigative journalist, becomes involved in looking for the criminal, who is believed to be still claiming victims now. Many twists and turns and a big surprise close to the end which I never saw coming! Thriller lovers should devour this book.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Melissa In The City

    First a HUGE round of applause to the author J.G. Hetherton for making me stay up half the night flipping pages like a mad woman while nervously twisting my hair and trying to remember to be quiet when I yelled "omg no way" and "what the what"?!" every few pages! Congrats and Thank you! This was one of those books that I found myself totally immersed in without realizing how invested I had actually become and next thing I know I'm 100 pages in or so and I cannot put it down. Can't stop. Won't st First a HUGE round of applause to the author J.G. Hetherton for making me stay up half the night flipping pages like a mad woman while nervously twisting my hair and trying to remember to be quiet when I yelled "omg no way" and "what the what"?!" every few pages! Congrats and Thank you! This was one of those books that I found myself totally immersed in without realizing how invested I had actually become and next thing I know I'm 100 pages in or so and I cannot put it down. Can't stop. Won't stop. There were twists, darkness, terrible people doing terrible things, missing children, and a journalist who was willing to go the darkest places both physically and emotionally. This was so well written and the characters were super easy to get attached to (or hate!). I loved the development of the friendship between Laura and Rodgers. And I would like to award Laura Chambers with the #BadAssWomen Club star because she is a true B.A.W who will stop at nothing or at no one to get to the truth. She was put down, passed over, laughed at, verbally abused and yet, nothing stopped her from getting to the bottom of the truth that no one else believed. My table of the #BadAssWomen I would love to sit and have wine with is getting bigger and Laura Chambers is an awesome addition! I also have to say the title symmetry with the story...on point! So many meanings in this title! Thank you to #NetGalley and J.G. Hetherton and the publisher #CrookedLaneBooks for the opportunity to read this way early with a free ARC in exchange for my honest review. I wish you success with this book in June because I think it deserves ALL THE STARS!! Friends: PUT THIS ON YOUR TBR for June!!!!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Nancy

    This book wasn’t on my radar at all, but it was one of the included Audible books so I decided to give it a go. What a pleasant surprise it turned out to be! Last Girl Gone is an impressive debut novel. The story lured me in from the start. It was really well written, suspenseful and kept me guessing until the end. I found Laura to be self-serving at times which didn’t make her the most likable protagonist, but she grew on me a bit by the end. I did, however, like the relationship she developed This book wasn’t on my radar at all, but it was one of the included Audible books so I decided to give it a go. What a pleasant surprise it turned out to be! Last Girl Gone is an impressive debut novel. The story lured me in from the start. It was really well written, suspenseful and kept me guessing until the end. I found Laura to be self-serving at times which didn’t make her the most likable protagonist, but she grew on me a bit by the end. I did, however, like the relationship she developed with retired Sheriff Donald Rodgers. Due to COVID, its publication date was pushed back, but I’m looking forward to reading the next book in the series and hoping Laura’s character gets fleshed out a little more. 4 stars.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Kathy

    Listened to audiobook. Generally, I don't mind unlikable characters, but Laura Chambers was way over the top. She has disrespect for everything and everyone, including herself, until all of a sudden, she considers herself above the law and journalistic ethics, and infinitely superior to her coworkers. There is no relationship she values. Considering that she is going to be the ongoing protagonist in this series, my dislike does not bode well for Laura and me. The writing was lacking, in my opinion Listened to audiobook. Generally, I don't mind unlikable characters, but Laura Chambers was way over the top. She has disrespect for everything and everyone, including herself, until all of a sudden, she considers herself above the law and journalistic ethics, and infinitely superior to her coworkers. There is no relationship she values. Considering that she is going to be the ongoing protagonist in this series, my dislike does not bode well for Laura and me. The writing was lacking, in my opinion. Readers who read this genre, which the publisher specializes in, do not need to be schooled in the most elementary details of journalism, law enforcement procedure, forensics. Uncountable cliches. Lip service is given to appropriate boundaries between therapist and client, but a very unrealistic dynamic is portrayed.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Erin Beall

    Really strong. So strong, it reminded me of the first Tracy Crosswhite. The missing pieces are an interesting plot trick... not giving us every scene but then ultimately piecing everything together lengthens suspense in a unique way and encourages stickwithitiveness. 4.25 stars!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Tina

    This is a mystery thriller, and this is the first book in the Laura Chambers Mystery series. I read this book because it takes place in Hillsborough, NC which very near where in live. It was weird to read a book where I know where all the places was, and I could picture the setting while reading the book. I have to say this book took me a while to get into, and I almost DNF it. I am glad I finished it because I really enjoyed it after I got into it. I am not sure if I enjoyed it more because I k This is a mystery thriller, and this is the first book in the Laura Chambers Mystery series. I read this book because it takes place in Hillsborough, NC which very near where in live. It was weird to read a book where I know where all the places was, and I could picture the setting while reading the book. I have to say this book took me a while to get into, and I almost DNF it. I am glad I finished it because I really enjoyed it after I got into it. I am not sure if I enjoyed it more because I know the area the book talked about. (*)

  14. 5 out of 5

    M.L. Falconer

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Could have been very good. Instead it was just stupid. Its rare that a book is so bad that it actually makes me a bit angry. Every man in the book is a complete dick to her and to women in general and even the women are complete bitches to her taking the side of the piece of crap men in the story and what at all does any of the verbal and physical abuse to her have to do with the story? Absolutely nothing. The bar scene is rediculous and has nothing to do with the story at all. The level of verba Could have been very good. Instead it was just stupid. Its rare that a book is so bad that it actually makes me a bit angry. Every man in the book is a complete dick to her and to women in general and even the women are complete bitches to her taking the side of the piece of crap men in the story and what at all does any of the verbal and physical abuse to her have to do with the story? Absolutely nothing. The bar scene is rediculous and has nothing to do with the story at all. The level of verbal and physical abuse she takes from EVERY man in the story just because she is a woman and from EVERY woman in the story, is absolutely ridiculous. And then, the only person who is even slightly nice to her, in a crappy condescending way, turns out to be the killer. Seriously? Everyone In the book is a complete ass hole? The way her mother treats her and she keeps going home to her?? No! Just no! I don't know anyone who would let their mother repeatedly call her a whore and still stay in her mother's life. That's just BS. She gets a call from the killer at her boyfriends house.... He answers it and just nonchalantly hands her the phone. No question as to who it is or how he knew she was at his place. Ridiculous. And the cliched writing almost made me stop reading half way through. Only reason I finished it is because I hate to not finish a book I've started. I read the audio book on audible. The narrator reading the entire story in a slight whisper was incredibly annoying. Also, no FBI agent would EVER let a reporter have and just give her crime scene photos, let alone show them to her. Eugene has no use of his legs at all. There was no car at the cabin save for the cops truck. No wheel chair there. No walker. Eugene was found out back with the dead cop but no one wonders how he got there or how he was moving around up there with useless legs. And to top it off they all think its plausible that a 70 year old man carried a body 200 yards in a muddy field And staged the body so carefully while in a wheelchair AND he was able to camouflage all his wheelchair tracks!! Seriously? That is utterly ridiculous. Her boyfriend .... The COP goes to investigate the cabin and gets killed and somehow that is the main characters fault? And now she's hated not only by the characters in the story but by the entire town for "getting the cop killed"? That's asinine! How in the world does the killer know she dialled 911 before she smashed her cell? BS! No way she could have known that. And what is with the bizarre lesbian thing at the end? Also, if the main character could not get her car down the the race track because the road was blocked off by a bar, how did the killer get her truck down there? Is it just me or was the main character really nonchalant about her legs being on fire, stating it as if it was an "oh by the way" thing. Why did the killer kill Olivia but take Teresa to the orphanage? Why did she not leave the last girl in the shed to kill her too? How did the guy with the dog know to go looking for her? She had not been missing for very long. What was the point of cutting off the last two girls ears when that wasn't done to the other victims. How does a girl get dropped off at an orphanage and not ever get investigated by the police or the nuns to find out if she is a missing person? That should be the first thing that is done. And a place like that taking in a bunch of unwanted kids should be the first place to look for missing children. Also, where is child protective services for hell sake? Wouldn't it be the churches' first call to child protective services and then the police when a new child comes in? Eugene abducted the killer when she was 10. What serial killer would abduct a child and then turn her over to an orphanage two years later? Seriously? She could identify him!! Why give her to the orphanage and then abduct and kill three other girls? Why not kill the first one too instead of letting her go and risk her telling on him? That is just ridiculous! And not what a serial killer would do. And when he brought her in two years after abducting her the nuns nor the police investigated if she could be a missing person? Seriously? And the killer didn't tell the nuns at that time that Mildred kidnapped her from the orphanage to begin with? BS!

  15. 4 out of 5

    KC

    When a defamed reporter reluctantly returns to her southern hometown she stumbles upon a story which could put her career back on track. But as Laura Chambers digs deeper into the case of the abductions and murders of local young girls, she finds herself slowly becoming the killer's pawn. This fast paced mystery is filled with many twists and turns and will keep readers guessing up until its surprising conclusion. When a defamed reporter reluctantly returns to her southern hometown she stumbles upon a story which could put her career back on track. But as Laura Chambers digs deeper into the case of the abductions and murders of local young girls, she finds herself slowly becoming the killer's pawn. This fast paced mystery is filled with many twists and turns and will keep readers guessing up until its surprising conclusion.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Laura Snider

    When I first started this book, I wondered why it had such a low overall starred ranking. It was a solid book early on. Interesting characters, an intense plot, and lots of tension. But then the author revealed the murderer and I was like, “wait, what? This is dumb.” The last quarter of the book was ridiculous to me. It felt phoned in. Like the author didn’t know where he was going with it and decided to settle on the most shocking culprit. But it wasn’t shocking in a good way. It was shocking i When I first started this book, I wondered why it had such a low overall starred ranking. It was a solid book early on. Interesting characters, an intense plot, and lots of tension. But then the author revealed the murderer and I was like, “wait, what? This is dumb.” The last quarter of the book was ridiculous to me. It felt phoned in. Like the author didn’t know where he was going with it and decided to settle on the most shocking culprit. But it wasn’t shocking in a good way. It was shocking in a, “that’s so absurd that I’m annoyed,” kind of way.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Audrey

    Enjoyable mystery/psychological thriller. Kept me reading to the end although I suspected the twist about halfway through. Not sure Laura Chambers, the reporter/amateur sleuth/protagonist, was quite developed well enough to make me want to read any more books with her as the main character.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Autumn Garner

    Seems like I’m in the minority here because I didn’t care for much of the book. It is your typical “serial child murderer” plot, which was really well written and executed. The twist was great and the conclusion was pretty satisfying. Where it all went wrong for me was with the characters. I hated protagonist, her boyfriend, her mother (man, she was a handful) and the whole town! There were maybe 3 characters I actually cared about (and one of them was a dog). The protagonist was just so hothead Seems like I’m in the minority here because I didn’t care for much of the book. It is your typical “serial child murderer” plot, which was really well written and executed. The twist was great and the conclusion was pretty satisfying. Where it all went wrong for me was with the characters. I hated protagonist, her boyfriend, her mother (man, she was a handful) and the whole town! There were maybe 3 characters I actually cared about (and one of them was a dog). The protagonist was just so hotheaded and dumb at times that I couldn’t ever find myself rooting for her. And everyone around her was so misogynistic and downright hateful I couldn’t wait for their comeuppance!! Also, I’m not really sure, but I felt a little uncomfortable with some of the character choices/dialogue regarding gender. It would be a spoiler if I said anything else, but I did pick up some weird wording and just odd behavior there.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Sue Em

    Although Laura Chambers escaped her small North Carolina town and her decidedly unmaternal mother, she has to return in disgrace after losing her job at the Boston Globe for some undisclosed trespass. Now working at the tiny local paper, she has to fight for stories against the minimally talented mayor's son. The body of a young girl is discovered in a field, and another is missing. As she ferrets out details of the story, she discovers a clue unnoticed by the police. Her investigation leads to a Although Laura Chambers escaped her small North Carolina town and her decidedly unmaternal mother, she has to return in disgrace after losing her job at the Boston Globe for some undisclosed trespass. Now working at the tiny local paper, she has to fight for stories against the minimally talented mayor's son. The body of a young girl is discovered in a field, and another is missing. As she ferrets out details of the story, she discovers a clue unnoticed by the police. Her investigation leads to another set of missing girls and the policeman who never got over those cases. All-in-all this is an excellent serial killer thriller with some unexpected twists. I'm not sure that I liked or trusted Laura, but the story will keep you turning those pages. Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Cathy

    Last Girl Gone by Grant Heatherton is one of those books that hook you before you even realize you were hooked! The characters are interesting and the story is compelling enough that before you know it your halfway through the book and can't stop. Laura, a reporter, is looking for a big story and before she knows it she is involved in finding and proving a serial killer had been taking little girls decades ago and may still be active, but is that all to the story? Nope! Not by a long shot! Thank Last Girl Gone by Grant Heatherton is one of those books that hook you before you even realize you were hooked! The characters are interesting and the story is compelling enough that before you know it your halfway through the book and can't stop. Laura, a reporter, is looking for a big story and before she knows it she is involved in finding and proving a serial killer had been taking little girls decades ago and may still be active, but is that all to the story? Nope! Not by a long shot! Thank you Netgalley for allowing me to read this ARC book for my honest opinion. I will be looking forward to reading more from this author.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Stephen Gorsch

    This story is not plausible at all. The only mystery in this mystery is how the author thought this book made any sense.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    Thanks to Crooked Lane Books for the free advanced copy in exchange for my honest review. I'm always excited to see a new crime series is starting, especially when it's a debut outing for the author. J.G. Hetherton has brought us a new series that follow journalist Laura Chambers. This is a perspective I enjoy for procedurals and crime fiction because we get a civilian perspective without losing out on the investigation. Laura Chambers is an investigative journalist and she is forced to return to Thanks to Crooked Lane Books for the free advanced copy in exchange for my honest review. I'm always excited to see a new crime series is starting, especially when it's a debut outing for the author. J.G. Hetherton has brought us a new series that follow journalist Laura Chambers. This is a perspective I enjoy for procedurals and crime fiction because we get a civilian perspective without losing out on the investigation. Laura Chambers is an investigative journalist and she is forced to return to her hometown of Hillsborough in North Carolina. She had been fire from her job at the Boston Globe which has ruined her career, so she takes a job at the local paper. One day her boring routine is turned upside down when a missing girl's body is found. As Laura sees her chance to get a front-page story, she dives into this case. She also discovers that years ago something similar had happened. Patty Finch, a local ten year old girl, left her home and never returned. This wasn't an isolated incident either - more girls were turning up missing. Now, it seems that history is repeating itself as more girls continue to disappear. Will Laura be able to find the kidnapper before it's too late? Before more girls go missing, before other bodies turn up, and before the kidnapper disappears. This was a solid start to a new crime series. The pacing was great and kept my attention the entire time. I liked the characters and there was plenty of suspense to go around as Laura began to take on the case on her own. There are some things I'm hoping to learn more about in regards to Laura and her life in future books. I'll definitely be continuing with this one! I give this one 4/5 stars!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Yellagirlgc

    I didn't want this story to end. Investigative journalist Laura Chambers is looking for her big story. There's a serial killer she's investigating named the Kid. She's working on herself but will stop at nothing to solve a mystery. Laura was fearless even though there was a killer loose. I was scared for her at times. I didn't want this story to end. Investigative journalist Laura Chambers is looking for her big story. There's a serial killer she's investigating named the Kid. She's working on herself but will stop at nothing to solve a mystery. Laura was fearless even though there was a killer loose. I was scared for her at times.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Shanda

    Characters aren’t well-developed, the writer loves the word “reductive”, and all overweight characters are portrayed as gross, shitty people, so much so that it really sticks out! They’re actually the only characters with much detail given to their physical description. The majority of the other characters have only passing mentions of their appearance. The plot is decently interesting but needlessly convoluted. Things drag on so much it was easy to figure out the mystery too soon. I think I onl Characters aren’t well-developed, the writer loves the word “reductive”, and all overweight characters are portrayed as gross, shitty people, so much so that it really sticks out! They’re actually the only characters with much detail given to their physical description. The majority of the other characters have only passing mentions of their appearance. The plot is decently interesting but needlessly convoluted. Things drag on so much it was easy to figure out the mystery too soon. I think I only managed to finish it because I had a road trip out of town and listened to the audiobook.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jeanne

    This book had a logical plot until the end which seemed contrived. The voice was stark and killing descriptions too gruesome for my taste

  26. 4 out of 5

    Dione Brown

    It's hard to not just go in on these reviews. I am gonna read something else by this Author.I am still trying to figure a few things out...The Therapist?? 🤔😳 It's hard to not just go in on these reviews. I am gonna read something else by this Author.I am still trying to figure a few things out...The Therapist?? 🤔😳

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Martin

    Laura Chambers is back home in Hillsborough, North Carolina, after being fired as an investigative journalist in Boston. She ran afoul of the powerful and her paper let her go rather than being sued. Now she is working for the local paper and dealing with another reporter who is resentful of her previous success and abusive because of it. She is also living back in her childhood home with her emotionally abusive mother and going to therapy to deal with her problems. When a young girl's body is fo Laura Chambers is back home in Hillsborough, North Carolina, after being fired as an investigative journalist in Boston. She ran afoul of the powerful and her paper let her go rather than being sued. Now she is working for the local paper and dealing with another reporter who is resentful of her previous success and abusive because of it. She is also living back in her childhood home with her emotionally abusive mother and going to therapy to deal with her problems. When a young girl's body is found in a field, Laura's first thought is that reporting this could be her chance to get her career back on track and out of Hillsborough. Another young girl is missing and the hunt is on to find her. Laura is sleeping with a police deputy and using him for inside information. Through him she learns the name of the FBI agent who is also working the case and goes to him to share a tip. The FBI agent points her to a previous series of killings of young girls that happened in 1988 which has a number of similarities to the current case. Laura's investigation into the old case leads to a previous police chief who is still haunted by that case and who offers Laura insights. When a clue leads to the possible whereabouts of the second missing girl Laura can't the the police to take her seriously and her FBI contact is unavailable. So she goes to the man she was sleeping with who is going to be fired because the police believe he is the one who shared information with Laura. He is killed while investigating and so is the supposed killer. Laura is hurt. The police and the FBI are eager to mark the case closed and Laura is the pariah who got a police officer killed. Then another girl disappears. This was a fast-paced story with a damaged main character. She has lost her faith in humanity and her own ideals. She is, however, determined to find out what happened to the two girls who are still missing even it it costs her life. There were a number of twists and turns to the story and a surprise that I didn't see coming that made this a compelling story.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Bertine

    I pick the book up, start reading and then set it down to do chores. I literally like doing laundry over reading this book.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Nicole

    2.5 good ending

  30. 5 out of 5

    Amy Bergstrand

    I can’t believe this was a debut novel! Last Girl Gone was such a powerful start to what I understand will be a new series. JG Hetherton has done a magnificent job of weaving together a nail biting plot that keeps twisting until the end. Because the final twist was similar to a different book that I read recently; I figure it out. But, that didn’t lessen the effect nor the impact. Thank you to netgalley, Crooked Lanes and JG Hetherton for allowing me to review this book in exchange of an honest r I can’t believe this was a debut novel! Last Girl Gone was such a powerful start to what I understand will be a new series. JG Hetherton has done a magnificent job of weaving together a nail biting plot that keeps twisting until the end. Because the final twist was similar to a different book that I read recently; I figure it out. But, that didn’t lessen the effect nor the impact. Thank you to netgalley, Crooked Lanes and JG Hetherton for allowing me to review this book in exchange of an honest review.

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