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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

Time of Departure

ISBN: 9781250072757

Publisher: St Martin's Press

Publication Date: 12/1/2015

Format: Hardcover

My Rating: 4 Stars

Florida state prosecutor Claire Talbot is as tough as they come, and not everyone loves her for it. Newly promoted Felony Division Chief, Claire has about as many jealous detractors as she does supporters. Some colleagues are openly skeptical about her youth, her abilities, and even her gender.

When a highway project construction crew unearths two skeletons in a common grave, Claire reopens an investigation into a string of abductions that took place before she was born.

While researching the file, she meets retired cop Marc Hastings, who once worked on the case. He maneuvers his way into the investigation--and into Claire's life. Marc has an uncanny familiarity with Claire's habits, and she begins to realize that not all is as it seems. The detective urges Claire on, mysteriously convinced that only she can solve the case. Together, they unearth more graves. But then, disaster strikes … and Claire finally discovers what Hastings knew all along. It's a secret almost too shocking for a sane mind to grasp. The key to the killings may lie deep in Claire's own past. But what if Claire's past lies in her future?? Full of spellbinding twists, Time of Departure will appeal not only to thriller aficionados, but to readers who appreciate a strong female lead and a compelling love story. A page-turner that will keep readers on the edge of their seats, Time of Departure heralds the arrival of an immensely talented new crime novelist.

My Review

A special thank you to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Douglas Schofield delivers TIME OF DEPARTURE —a spellbinding unique mix of mystery, romance, cop-procedural, crime, thriller, and sci-fi/fantasy. MIND BLOWING. Cleverly crafted. A strong woman and a compelling love story rolled into one. Gainesville, Florida state prosecutor Claire Talbot, early thirties, is tough; however, the good old boys are not so keen on the newly promoted Felony Division Chief. A highway construction crew uncovers skeletons in a grave and Claire reopens the investigation---all which took place before she was born. During the investigation she meets retired cop, Marc Hastings who worked on the case back when. A 1970s cold case involving eight abducted women. You soon sense something strange lurking –Marc seems to know things about Claire and provides other clues involving the case. At first she thinks he is just an older cop, haunted by a cold case, as most are. She is drawn to him, even though a huge difference in age. A TWIST: After a complete derailing, readers will be lead down a path….a secret. An eerie creepy feeling. Chilling. The key to the killings are connected to Claire’s past. From memories, past to present to future . . You are immediately hearing the lyrics and music of Twilight Zone (Golden Earring), and The Twilight Zone by Rod Serling. From drama, psycho-thriller, fantasy, science fiction, mystery, and suspense with an unexpected twist. The Time Element TIME OF DEPARTURE is different, original, out of the box, unexpected, and unique. Agree with a few of the other reviewers. Starts out as a hard- boiled detective crime thriller, clever, and slowly turns into a fantasy type reminding me a little of Andrew Neiderman, and in some parts: a mix of Stephen King and Dean Koontz. By viewing the front cover, you are not expecting what lies between the pages. When you finish you understand. “Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” ― T.S. Eliot

“Time present and time past Are both perhaps present in time future And time future contained in time past.” ― T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets

Surprise? Yes. Reference: As in literature--"A Chinese box structure refers to a frame narrative, a novel or drama that is told in the form of a narrative inside a narrative, giving views from different perspectives." Schofield sets up a cop-procedural crime mystery, and in combination of strong characters, time, mystery, events, with a twist. Working from inside out, or outside in? Readers will enjoy the book if not locking themselves into certain expectations or genre. Some great writing. The unexpected. Entertaining. Take a step back. The end is back at the beginning. Suspension of disbelief. “The willingness to suspend one's critical faculties and believe the unbelievable; sacrifice of realism and logic for the sake of enjoyment.”

“Unless you leave a person both physically and mentally, you are still with that person and there is no real departure!” ― Mehmet Murat ildan

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About the Author

Douglas Schofield was raised and educated in British Columbia, where he earned degrees in History and Law. Over the past three decades, he has worked as a trial lawyer in Canada, Bermuda and the Cayman Islands. During those years, he has prosecuted and defended hundreds of cases of murder, sexual assault and other serious crimes. In 2013, after nine years as Assistant Solicitor General in the Cayman Islands Government, Douglas returned to private practice.

Douglas and his wife Melody live on Grand Cayman, along with their most excellent and amazing talking cat, Juno, who kindly permits them to share his home. Website






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