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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

A Different Kind of Gone

Narrator: Patricia Shade

Brilliance Audio

ISBN: 9781662504389

Publisher: Lake Union Publishing

Publication Date: 12/05/2023

Format: Other

My Rating: 5 Stars (ARC)

The truth behind a teenage girl’s disappearance becomes something to conceal in a gripping novel about justice, lies, and impossible choices by New York Times bestselling author Catherine Ryan Hyde.

When nineteen-year-old Jill Moss goes missing near the Utah-Arizona border, everyone has an opinion. Only Norma Gallagher, a search and rescue volunteer, knows the real story.

Norma’s already found Jill, huddled in a cave and terrified that her abusive boyfriend, Jake, will kill her. If he ever sees her again. To protect Jill from a dangerous man, Norma quietly delivers the girl to her grateful parents in California, even though she’s conflicted. Keeping Jill safe and hidden from Jake, the press, and the public will be their secret. But secrets can’t last forever.

Five years later, the disappearance stirs a new media frenzy when Jake is arrested for the murder of Jill Moss—and Norma knows he didn’t kill her. As Jake is about to stand trial, lust for retribution inflames public opinion and Jill’s family refuses to come forward, forcing Norma to make a life-changing decision.

What are the consequences if she stays silent? And what are the risks if she dares to finally tell the truth?

My Review

Master storyteller Catherine Ryan Hyde returns following Just a Regular Boy with her latest, A DIFFERENT KIND OF GONE —signature Hyde— a thought-provoking, emotional, timely, and compelling story of a teen girl's disappearance, friendship, guilt, regrets, justice, and a heroine who helps change her life.

I loved this book! Of course, I feel the same way about all the CRH books.

Set on the Utah/Arizona border, in the small town of Sloot, a nineteen-year-old woman, Jill Moss goes missing while camping with her boyfriend, Jake. You may think of the Gabby Petito/Brian Laundrie case; however, this story takes a different twist.

Her parents (California) are worried about her after receiving a text from her earlier stating she was leaving Jake and could be in grave danger. They have not heard back.

Norma Gallagher (Late fifties)— a private woman who works at a bar/diner, divorced, with two grown sons that are somewhat estranged, lives alone in a cabin in the woods with her horse, Saint Fred, two hound dogs, Gracie and Lonny, and other animals. She also volunteers with the search and rescue team with her dogs and horse led by Ian.

Norma finds the girl hiding in a cave without a phone or anything, afraid for her life. She begs Norma to help her escape and not tell the others she was found. She is afraid of Jake. She wants Norma to call her parents and come back and get her on her horse later that night and take her to her home until they figure out a way to get away to California.

Against her better judgment, Norma struggles with this decision, but ultimately, she worries about the girl's safety and contacts the parents. She winds up driving her to California, and along the way they get to know one another.

Norma also has a past with an abusive husband and lost her boys in the custody battle (he lied). They are not close as the boys were young and believed their dad's lies. So this case reminds her of her past and she would have wanted someone to help her.

Her parents take her to Oregon under a different name with a different life. She is working for a vet and has a job caretaking land with a cabin and has horses and dogs, similar to Norma whom she looks up to. (inspired by her)

Norma has to pretend to work on the case, but it is getting to her. During all the publicity, Jake comes into the bar and gets into a fight. All the social media are swarming.

Then Norma meets a young girl named Wanda and takes her under her wing. Without too many details, Wanda winds up with Jake in a similar situation five years later. Norma is not close with her sons, but now she has two young girls who look up to her. When they get to the point where they are going to charge Jake with murder, she knows she must go to the DA.

However, things turn in a different direction with suspense and tension as these two young women, victims of domestic violence, join forces with Norma. Then, someone takes the law into their own hands.

I loved Norma! She is a wise woman, witty and straightforward. I loved the relationship with Jill's parents, Jill and Wanda, and her friend at the diner.

I enjoy multi-generation stories as there is something to learn from the older generation. The setting, the mystery, the characters, as well as the essential topics of domestic suspense all make this a must-read book!

A DIFFERENT KIND OF GONE is a gripping novel about domestic violence and the lives it touches—one of justice, friendship, wisdom, survival, and impossible choices with compelling, well-crafted, multi-generational characters and, as always, loveable animals.

For fans of Jessica Strawser's The Last Caretaker and Karma Brown's What Wild Women Do.

I always drop everything when I get a Catherine Ryan Hyde book! I have read all her books as a favorite author and a long-time fan. When you start reading a CRH book, you know you will be in for a rare treat; the characters will pull on your heartstrings, and you ultimately will learn something by the end. She writes from the heart about real people, life, and highly charged topics. Triumph over tragedy. Isn't that what all of us are drawn to?

I highly recommend A DIFFERENT KIND OF GONE and all her books. There is no comparison! I look forward to reading Life, Loss, and Puffins, coming May 14, 2024. I have the ARC and cannot wait to read it.

Thanks to Lake Union Publishing and NetGalley for a digital reviewer advanced copy for an honest review.

@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks

Pub Date: Dec 5, 2023

My Rating: 5 Stars


“Prolific author Hyde raises thorny issues around domestic violence, examines the power of misplaced guilt, and illustrates the bonds of shared experience in her take on a ripped-from-the-headlines story. Her characteristic empathy is on full display…” ―Booklist

About the Author

More on Writer's Write Literary B-Day Catherine Ryan Hyde

Credit: Douglas Sonders, 2019.

Catherine Ryan Hyde is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and #1 Amazon Charts bestselling author of more than forty-five books and counting. An avid traveler, equestrian, and amateur photographer, she shares her astrophotography with readers on her website.

Her novel Pay It Forward was adapted into a major motion picture, chosen by the American Library Association (ALA) for its Best Books for Young Adults list, and translated into more than twenty-three languages for distribution in over thirty countries. Both Becoming Chloe and Jumpstart the World were included on the ALA’s Rainbow Book List, and Jumpstart the World was a finalist for two Lambda Literary Awards. Where We Belong won two Rainbow Awards in 2013, and The Language of Hoofbeats won a Rainbow Award in 2015.

More than fifty of her short stories have been published in the Antioch Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, Ploughshares, Glimmer Train, and many other journals; in the anthologies Santa Barbara Stories and California Shorts; and in the bestselling anthology Dog Is My Co-Pilot. Her stories have been honored by the Raymond Carver Short Story Contest and the Tobias Wolff Award and have been nominated for The Best American Short Stories, the O. Henry Award, and the Pushcart Prize. Three have been cited in the annual Best American Short Stories anthology.

As a professional public speaker, she has addressed the National Conference on Education, twice spoken at Cornell University, met with AmeriCorps members at the White House, and shared a dais with Bill Clinton.

For more information, please visit the author at



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