The Mask Collectors

Little A: Amazon. Jun. 2019. 352p. ISBN 9781503903678. $24.95; pap. ISBN 9781503903661. $14.95; ebk. ISBN 9781503958654. SUSPENSE
DEBUT While Grace McCloud and her husband, Duncan, are attending her class reunion in New Jersey, one of her fellow alumni, journalist Angie Osborne, is found dead. Duncan is deeply disturbed by the death scene and can’t stop thinking about it. Meanwhile, Cinosat, the pharmaceutical company Duncan works for, is preparing to introduce a new miracle drug. Although Duncan was initially skeptical about the drug, he finds himself feeling hopeful, mostly for personal reasons. However, Grace discovers that prior to her classmate’s strange death, Angie may have been investigating Cinosat. When Cinosat, capitalizing on Duncan’s anthropological expertise, sends him on a fateful trip to Sri Lanka, Grace investigates Angie’s possible connection to the pharmaceutical giant. The heart-pounding race to uncover a shockingly diabolical conspiracy is thrilling and suspenseful. However, the novel may also stimulate the debate over the healing connection between faith and the power of suggestion.
VERDICT Although some suspension of belief is required on occasion, debut novelist Vilhauer has written an unsettling and visionary novel of suspense. [See “Unmasking Motives,” LJ 5/19.]

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