Trace of Evil
A riveting mystery that introduces a bold and audacious rookie detective assigned to hunt for a killer who is haunted by the past in this gripping murder case…Natalie Lockhart always knew she was going to be a cop. A rookie detective on the Burning Lake police force, she was raised on the wisdom of her chief-of-police father. These cases will haunt you if you let them. Grief doesn’t come with instructions.But the one thing her father couldn’t teach her was how to handle loss. Natalie’s beloved sister was viciously murdered as a teenager, and she carries the scars deep in her heart. Although the killer was locked up, the trace evidence never added up, and Natalie can’t help wondering―is the past really behind her?As the newest member on the force, Natalie is tasked with finding nine missing persons who’ve vanished off the face of the earth, dubbed “the Missing Nine.” One night, while following up on a new lead, she comes across a savage crime that will change everything.Daisy Buckner―a popular schoolteacher, wife to a cop, and newly pregnant―lies dead on her kitchen floor. As Natalie hunts for Daisy’s killer in the wake of the town’s shock, her search leads to a string of strange clues―about the Missing Nine, about Daisy’s secret life, and reviving fresh doubts about her sister’s murder.As the investigation deepens, Natalie’s every move risks far-reaching consequences―for the victims, for the town of Burning Lake, and for herself.Spellbinding and gripping, Trace of Evil is a novel of twisting suspense that will leave you breathless

Trace of Evil Details

TitleTrace of Evil
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseDec 3rd, 2019
PublisherMinotaur Books
ISBN-139781250205711
Rating
GenreMystery, Fiction, Thriller, Suspense, Mystery Thriller, Detective, Crime

Trace of Evil Review

  • Theresa Alan
    January 1, 1970
    I had a hard time getting through this one because the writing is mediocre. It’s was a paint-by-numbers novel with characters that didn’t come to life because the author relies on info-dumps of telling us a lot of background. I should have liked Detective Natalie Lockhart. She cares about people who have struggled in life because of lack of money or abusive parents, but because I was TOLD she cares about people who’ve had it rough instead of being SHOWN she cares through her actions, she didn’t I had a hard time getting through this one because the writing is mediocre. It’s was a paint-by-numbers novel with characters that didn’t come to life because the author relies on info-dumps of telling us a lot of background. I should have liked Detective Natalie Lockhart. She cares about people who have struggled in life because of lack of money or abusive parents, but because I was TOLD she cares about people who’ve had it rough instead of being SHOWN she cares through her actions, she didn’t seem like a real person to me. I know it’s fiction, but in a well-written novel, the characters can seem like real people because they come alive in my imagination. This is the first of a series of books with Detective Lockhart, who lives in Burning Lake, New York, a city that has seen many people on the fringes of society disappear over the years. Transients, people with drug and alcohol problems, the homeless. Natalie’s own sister was murdered by her boyfriend twenty years ago and now Natalie is investigating the murder of her other sister’s close friend, a woman who had been like another sister to Natalie, the youngest of the three girls. Sometimes when I read a novel with a detective as the protagonist, I’ll wonder if the author actually worked as a detective herself because the story seems so believable that it’s hard to believe the writer is in fact, just a writer who did a lot of research but has never worked in law enforcement. I didn’t feel that way with this book. Instead I found myself thinking, “hmm, really?” Like when a suspect is given a polygraph, instead of yes/no answers to yes/no questions, he gives an interview. Granted, I only know this stuff from movies, but it didn’t seem accurate. Also, the dialogue is not good. The daughter addresses her mother with the word “mom” in every sentence, which is simply not how people talk in real life. Thanks to NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book, which RELEASES DECEMBER 3, 2019.For more reviews, please visit http://www.theresaalan.net/blog
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  • J.D. Barker
    January 1, 1970
    Witchcraft, a brutal murder, and secrets buried in a sleepy town's past... With TRACE OF EVIL, Blanchard expertly weaves mystery and spine-tingling suspense. A tense, nail-biter of a thriller!
  • Nancy McFarlane
    January 1, 1970
    Trace of Evil unfolds in a sleepy tourist town near the Adirondack Mountains, in upstate New York. The tourist flock to see where 3 local witches were supposedly killed in the days of the witch hunts and Salem witch trials. Because of the ties to witches there has always been an interest in the occult and black magic and satanism and the town has cashed in on this to promote tourism. But on the whole it is a sweet town, where everyone knows his neighbors, and where everyone knows the secrets tha Trace of Evil unfolds in a sleepy tourist town near the Adirondack Mountains, in upstate New York. The tourist flock to see where 3 local witches were supposedly killed in the days of the witch hunts and Salem witch trials. Because of the ties to witches there has always been an interest in the occult and black magic and satanism and the town has cashed in on this to promote tourism. But on the whole it is a sweet town, where everyone knows his neighbors, and where everyone knows the secrets that this little town harbors. There is still teenage dabbling with the occult just like when Detective Natalie Lockhart was in school, there are troubled marriages just waiting for the trouble to bubble to the surface, and there is murder… too much murder… some solved, some unsolved, some cold cases and some new. As a new hire Natalie is given the cold case of the missing nine and is determined to help find out what happened to these girls over the years. Then comes a new murder – one very close to home - and Natalie has to separate her professional instincts from the personal feelings she has for the suspects. There is a lot more than a trace of evil hiding in this tiny town as you will discover when the shocking ending is revealed.
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  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    Atmospheric and creepy, this is the perfect thriller for a dark autumn night. Natalie Lockhart is a police officer in he town where she grew up, and is investigating the murder of a woman she's known all her life, the best friend of one of her sisters. Natalie's other sister was murdered twenty years ago, and her death hangs over the current case. The town is also haunted by it's history of executing suspected witches, and generations of teen girls have experimented with magic and witchcraft. Atmospheric and creepy, this is the perfect thriller for a dark autumn night. Natalie Lockhart is a police officer in he town where she grew up, and is investigating the murder of a woman she's known all her life, the best friend of one of her sisters. Natalie's other sister was murdered twenty years ago, and her death hangs over the current case. The town is also haunted by it's history of executing suspected witches, and generations of teen girls have experimented with magic and witchcraft.I thoroughly enjoyed the mystery and the atmosphere in this book. The town history, the teen girl drama, and the way the case intertwined with Natalie's personal life all had me completely engrossed. I'd recommend this to anyone who likes creepy mysteries or police procedurals. The witchcraft angle reminded me a bit of The Craftsman. I will definitely read the next book in this series.*I received a free ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Trisha
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you to Minotaur Books for the gifted copy!Natalie Lockhart is a detective in her hometown of Burning Lake, NY. The town has a history with the occult, having been the site of the killings of 3 accused witches centuries ago. Wicca and covens are popular, especially with the local teenagers. Natalie herself experimented with it as a teen. Now as an adult, she tasked with investigating nine cold cases, as well as the recent murder of local teacher, Daisy Buckner, who is also a fri Thank you to Minotaur Books for the gifted copy!Natalie Lockhart is a detective in her hometown of Burning Lake, NY. The town has a history with the occult, having been the site of the killings of 3 accused witches centuries ago. Wicca and covens are popular, especially with the local teenagers. Natalie herself experimented with it as a teen. Now as an adult, she tasked with investigating nine cold cases, as well as the recent murder of local teacher, Daisy Buckner, who is also a friend of her sister Grace. Natalie must figure out if Daisy's murder is related to the cold cases, while also contending with her and her family's own dark past.Guys. This book. THIS. BOOK. I don't even know where to start because I've got such a massive book hangover from it. This is the first hard copy ARC I've read, and I'm so happy it was. The story is Law and Order meets The Blair Witch Project. Every character is so well-written; Natalie, especially, feels so relatable and familiar. I could not stop reading. This book is the literary equivalent of extra buttery movie theatre popcorn: you promise yourself you're only going to have a bit, and then BAM, it's all gone before you know it. I wish my review were more eloquent, but I just can't stop gushing about how freaking awesome this book is.My only complaint is that I can't read the next one in the series right now.Spoiler alert: everyone of my family members is probably getting a copy of this for Christmas.
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  • Romancebooksandmore
    January 1, 1970
    By romancebooksandmoreA bit of spooky a bit of family so much mystery and you will never know where this story is going. it says its the first book in the series so i'm expecting much more from Natalie seeing where she goes from here and what new mystery's and heartaches will be in her future. perfect Halloween read to . curl up with. though since this book actually does not come out until December maybe pretend it's Halloween. not to scary only minimal romance you will love it so ge By romancebooksandmoreA bit of spooky a bit of family so much mystery and you will never know where this story is going. it says its the first book in the series so i'm expecting much more from Natalie seeing where she goes from here and what new mystery's and heartaches will be in her future. perfect Halloween read to . curl up with. though since this book actually does not come out until December maybe pretend it's Halloween. not to scary only minimal romance you will love it so get on picking this book up when it comes out in a few months and look out for the continuation of Natalie's story in future books. on for the keep shelf that is for sure and I'm usually not a big mystery fan but I ate this book up one delicious word at a time
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  • Catherine Faulkenburg
    January 1, 1970
    This book is gripping from start to finish. There are several different mysteries that swirl around the town of Burning Lake, from the most recent murder to a string of serial murders that are handed down to the most rookie cop on the city's police force. The story is intricate and complicated but Ms. Blanchard 100 percent pulls it off. The characters are well written (particularly Natalie) and the setting is well described. There is a bit of gruesomeness in the story, but it's not over the top. This book is gripping from start to finish. There are several different mysteries that swirl around the town of Burning Lake, from the most recent murder to a string of serial murders that are handed down to the most rookie cop on the city's police force. The story is intricate and complicated but Ms. Blanchard 100 percent pulls it off. The characters are well written (particularly Natalie) and the setting is well described. There is a bit of gruesomeness in the story, but it's not over the top. I found this book hard to put down. It's longer than many others of this type and while I felt the length, nothing was particularly wasted. I highly recommend you put this on your waiting list if crime/psychological thrillers are your thing, like they are mine!
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  • amanda
    January 1, 1970
    What had once been beautiful was dead.We really are kicking this fall off with some spooky great books and I’m really excited about it! At first I was hesitant about Trace of Evil because I thought it would be a boring police procedural book but it exceeded my expectations and more. Despite her mom’s wishes Natalie Lockhart knew she was destined to be a cop. It’s in her blood after all. Raised by a police chief, Natalie is the youngest of three sisters and besides the job has been through her ow What had once been beautiful was dead.
We really are kicking this fall off with some spooky great books and I’m really excited about it! At first I was hesitant about Trace of Evil because I thought it would be a boring police procedural book but it exceeded my expectations and more. Despite her mom’s wishes Natalie Lockhart knew she was destined to be a cop. It’s in her blood after all. Raised by a police chief, Natalie is the youngest of three sisters and besides the job has been through her own mountain of tragedy. Her oldest sister, Willow, was tragically murdered, as a teenager and grief firmly planted its roots in her family. It nestled and it grew.Natalie is now a rookie cop and is tasked with solving the cases of “the Missing Nines”. That all gets sidetracked when a shocking murder rocks the small town of Burning Lake and redefines the past and who she is as a person completely.I wouldn’t say this was difficult to get into but for me it took a few chapters to read before I was fully engaged. But when I was, I was all the way in. It’s a slow burner and we are introduced to a lot of characters and a lot of history so it’s overwhelming at first but this is to be expected when it’s a book about a small town. Everybody knows everybody else and the history is grand and toxic. That’s what makes it so great in the big scheme of things.The plot was really interesting and a twist from the usual mystery/detective angle. I liked how there was a coven/witch angle to it. I mean, HELLO THE CRAFT?? It was different and also showed how teenagers can throw things completely out of proportion. I did think that maybe a little too much was put into this book and I’m wondering if perhaps this will become a series? If so that would be terrific. I found there were a few issues with the pacing. A lot seemed to be jam packed in one book which made me just a tad bit overwhelming for me. Natalie. Sweet, amazing Natalie has been through so so much. Okay, there absolutely has to be more of her to read because this poor woman has absolutely been through HELL her entire life. LOL, she needs some sort of happiness. I legit gasped at the big twist and clutched my head. I wasn’t expecting it at all and was also completely pissed off. This is a great read for you thrill seekers like me who want to read about murder in a small town and get a rush at trying to solve what the hell is going on. I almost never get it right but that’s exactly what makes it so fun. Don’t judge me.Thank you very much to Netgalley and the publisher for a copy of this ARC. All opinions are my own.Let’s hit Replay. Let’s rewind the tape.
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  • Reads a Latte Thrillers
    January 1, 1970
    This story is so well done. From the description of the quaint, upstate New York town seeped in witchcraft folklore, to the individual characters. This entire book played like a movie in my head and I was lured in right from the first chapter. The book begins with Natalie and Grace, two sisters, visiting the grave on the “Death-a-versary” of their oldest sister, Willow, who was murdered by a jealous boyfriend 20 years ago. Natalie is a detective with the local police department and Grace a teach This story is so well done. From the description of the quaint, upstate New York town seeped in witchcraft folklore, to the individual characters. This entire book played like a movie in my head and I was lured in right from the first chapter. The book begins with Natalie and Grace, two sisters, visiting the grave on the “Death-a-versary” of their oldest sister, Willow, who was murdered by a jealous boyfriend 20 years ago. Natalie is a detective with the local police department and Grace a teacher at the local high school. The story takes another tragic turn when another teacher, Daisy is found murdered in her home. Daisy, the wife of a fellow detective and best friend to Grace, Natalie is forced to put her grieving aside to investigate Daisy’s murder that occurred on the same date as her sister 20 years earlier. To add even more intrigue, Natalie has also inherited some dusty cold cases called the missing 9, a series of unsolved crimes that have been passed down from detective to detective. As Natalie investigates the crime of Daisy, she finds clues that tie back to her unsolved cases and also uncovers some disturbing facts involving her niece, Ellie and the witchcraft that haunts the sleep town. This book grabbed me from chapter 1 and didn’t let go until the last page. The interlocking stories are so well woven together and you’re forced you to sit up and pay attention. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who loves a good thriller or crime story told from a detective’s point of view. Well done!
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  • Jean Kolinofsky
    January 1, 1970
    Natalie Lockhart grew up in Burning Lake, New York, a town associated with the Salem witch trials. She is now a rookie police officer. On her desk is a list of nine women who disappeared over time, a list that has been passed from officer to officer with little progress. Now it has been passed to her.When the wife of Daisy Buckner, a local teacher and the wife of a fellow officer, is discovered, suspicion falls on one of her students that she had been helping. He had made threats aga Natalie Lockhart grew up in Burning Lake, New York, a town associated with the Salem witch trials. She is now a rookie police officer. On her desk is a list of nine women who disappeared over time, a list that has been passed from officer to officer with little progress. Now it has been passed to her.When the wife of Daisy Buckner, a local teacher and the wife of a fellow officer, is discovered, suspicion falls on one of her students that she had been helping. He had made threats against her in the past, but when her husband chases him down he suffers a seizure and falls into a coma. Daisy had been a friend of Natalie and her sister Grace and as she becomes involved in the investigation she suspects that her marriage was in trouble.Alice Blanchard has constructed a complex story of murder and witchcraft. The murder of Natalie’s sister Willow twenty years earlier, the disappearance of the nine and the death of Daisy Come together in a finale that will leave you stunned. This book is listed as the first in the Natalie Lockhart series and I am looking forward to more in this series. I would like to thank BookishFirst for providing this book for my review.
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  • Donna Hines
    January 1, 1970
    "Death was like a secret."Such powerful and revolting action here that I still cannot believe this is the first in the Natalie Lockhart Series.This was a breath of fresh air with every aspect of a thriller nail biting story line that we all hope to indulge.The black witchery magic and darkness is evident almost from the start as we traverse into the realm of the gothic era.A time when revenge curses were commonplace and killing was perhaps a given.Natalie is the Det "Death was like a secret."Such powerful and revolting action here that I still cannot believe this is the first in the Natalie Lockhart Series.This was a breath of fresh air with every aspect of a thriller nail biting story line that we all hope to indulge.The black witchery magic and darkness is evident almost from the start as we traverse into the realm of the gothic era.A time when revenge curses were commonplace and killing was perhaps a given.Natalie is the Detective who is trying to uncover the truth.The main suspect in all this mess is Ethan but drugs and madness are present with Riley and all that resulted with the relationship between Daisy.Pregnancy in the senior year with an abortion resulted in the wrong decision making process but hook ups also took precadence.Now the stakes are even higher and with Willow already dead the need to find Ellie becomes crucial.It's purely a matter of life and death in this fantastic new read by Alice Blanchard.Highly recommend!
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  • Kathleen
    January 1, 1970
    The book blurb for this says it's "a riveting mystery that introduces a bold and audacious rookie detective" and I would have to agree with that completely. What they don't mention, which I think made this a great book, is the very creepy vibe that came with the setting. It's set in New England with grim weather and tales of witchcraft past and present. The author does a very convincing undertaking at setting the backdrop of the story in a dark and foreboding setting. Given that's one of my favo The book blurb for this says it's "a riveting mystery that introduces a bold and audacious rookie detective" and I would have to agree with that completely. What they don't mention, which I think made this a great book, is the very creepy vibe that came with the setting. It's set in New England with grim weather and tales of witchcraft past and present. The author does a very convincing undertaking at setting the backdrop of the story in a dark and foreboding setting. Given that's one of my favorite places for a good story, I knew that whatever the mystery was to bring, I was going to leave this book satisfied. I wasn't disappointed in any way. The mystery is great and the main character is very likable. Many thanks to the publisher for allowing me to read an advanced copy. This opinion is my own.
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  • Jen Bott
    January 1, 1970
    How loss can change a family forever...Blanchard tells several stories of death and loss, expertly woven together. Detective Natalie’s Lockhart’s life is defined by her sister Willow’s death, as is her sister Grace. This loss acts as the backdrop for Detective Lockhart's parallel investigations into the “Missing Nine” cold case and the shocking murder of Daisy Buckner. Wiccan practices, family secrets and a small community’s history play a central role in these plot lines that make itImpos How loss can change a family forever...Blanchard tells several stories of death and loss, expertly woven together. Detective Natalie’s Lockhart’s life is defined by her sister Willow’s death, as is her sister Grace. This loss acts as the backdrop for Detective Lockhart's parallel investigations into the “Missing Nine” cold case and the shocking murder of Daisy Buckner. Wiccan practices, family secrets and a small community’s history play a central role in these plot lines that make itImpossible to put this book down!With thanks to the publisher for the advanced reader copy.
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  • Darcia Helle
    January 1, 1970
    Trace of Evil is atmospheric, slow-burn suspense with multiple layers and complexities.Alice Blanchard perfectly captures the setting. I felt like I was there in rural upper state New York. The community intrigued me, as we pondered the question of how well we really know the people we've been around all our lives.The plot is perhaps too broad-reaching for some readers. We have the possibility of a serial killer with "the missing 9," the murder of Natalie's sister decades Trace of Evil is atmospheric, slow-burn suspense with multiple layers and complexities.Alice Blanchard perfectly captures the setting. I felt like I was there in rural upper state New York. The community intrigued me, as we pondered the question of how well we really know the people we've been around all our lives.The plot is perhaps too broad-reaching for some readers. We have the possibility of a serial killer with "the missing 9," the murder of Natalie's sister decades ago, the current murder, and teenagers involved in witchcraft. While all these aspects eventually converge, the story can sometimes feel like it lacks focus. That being said, I had no problem following the threads, and I enjoyed putting the pieces together.For the most part, the story has a strong sense of realism. Unfortunately, a detail in the prologue is blatantly false and I'm surprised the author and the editor didn't know better. Without giving any real spoilers, I'll just say that like most states in the US, New York has no statute of limitations on murder.Trace of Evil is the first book in a new series. I'm looking forward to spending more time in this community.*I received this book from the publisher, via a BookishFirst giveaway.*
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  • Denice Langley
    January 1, 1970
    As a new detective returns to her hometown to follow in her father's footsteps, the tension and unique storyline in Trace of Evil keeps readers enthralled by the inevitable crimes, new and old, that set the tone for this outstanding book. Alice Blanchard gives us the new-to-the-job but not to town detective, setting her right into the middle of her hometown's history of unsolved violent crimes. With her own sister's unsolved death giving her extra determination to find the killer who has haunted As a new detective returns to her hometown to follow in her father's footsteps, the tension and unique storyline in Trace of Evil keeps readers enthralled by the inevitable crimes, new and old, that set the tone for this outstanding book. Alice Blanchard gives us the new-to-the-job but not to town detective, setting her right into the middle of her hometown's history of unsolved violent crimes. With her own sister's unsolved death giving her extra determination to find the killer who has haunted her hometown for so long, the twists and turns thrown in this story will keep you guessing. This is truly one of the best new series I've read for awhile.
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  • Anne
    January 1, 1970
    This was a great thriller that combined many elements to make it a roller-coaster ride! Natalie is a rookie detective who is working on cold cases of missing women when a friend of her sister is discovered murdered in her own kitchen. Daisy was a teacher at the local high school so there are plenty of suspects, even her husband, and little evidence to be found. But Natalie is headstrong and even as she and her sister Grace are grieving their own sisters death years ago, she is determined to find This was a great thriller that combined many elements to make it a roller-coaster ride! Natalie is a rookie detective who is working on cold cases of missing women when a friend of her sister is discovered murdered in her own kitchen. Daisy was a teacher at the local high school so there are plenty of suspects, even her husband, and little evidence to be found. But Natalie is headstrong and even as she and her sister Grace are grieving their own sisters death years ago, she is determined to find the killer. There's a little witchcraft, crazy rumors circulating, and a mystery in her own past that haunts her as well. I did not see that end coming for sure and it took my breath away! Can't wait for the next installment of this series as Natalie is a force that cannot be stopped.Thanks to NetGalley for this ARC!
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  • Jenna Mahoney
    January 1, 1970
    Let me start off this review by stating that I REALLY hope this turns into a series. Natalie Lockhart is a rookie detective in a quaint town in upstate New York. The town dates back to the days of the Witch Hunts, and its dark past is both loved and hated by the locals. Most of the high schoolers dabble in wicca and other forms of witchcraft. We meet Natalie as she is going to a "Death-aversary." Natalie's sister was murdered when she was a beautiful, bright high school student, and Natalie and Let me start off this review by stating that I REALLY hope this turns into a series. Natalie Lockhart is a rookie detective in a quaint town in upstate New York. The town dates back to the days of the Witch Hunts, and its dark past is both loved and hated by the locals. Most of the high schoolers dabble in wicca and other forms of witchcraft. We meet Natalie as she is going to a "Death-aversary." Natalie's sister was murdered when she was a beautiful, bright high school student, and Natalie and her older sister observe her death each year. However, on the night of the Death-aversary, a beloved school teacher is found murdered on her kitchen floor. Natalie feels that this is not a coincidence -- in fact, she begins to see a pattern between a handful of cold cases. Trace of Evil was unlike anything I ever read. I loved the mix of the murder investigation, cold cases, and the underlying witchcraft theme. It was the perfect read to kick off the fall season!
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  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    Where to start? This is one of those books that grabs your attention early on and holds it until the end. Great characters, great plots, and great twists. This book checks all the boxes. You think you are following along in the story and then BAM!!! Read the last 45 pages you will know what I mean. The only bad part of the story was that it ended. I want more. A potential serial killer, a families tragic past, and a recent murder that rocks the town of Burning Lake. The main character Natalie Lo Where to start? This is one of those books that grabs your attention early on and holds it until the end. Great characters, great plots, and great twists. This book checks all the boxes. You think you are following along in the story and then BAM!!! Read the last 45 pages you will know what I mean. The only bad part of the story was that it ended. I want more. A potential serial killer, a families tragic past, and a recent murder that rocks the town of Burning Lake. The main character Natalie Lockhart and how she handles everything thrown her way is part of what keeps you glued to the pages. Thank you Alice Blanchard for the fantastic read!!! And thank you to bookishfirst and Minotaur Books for the ARC!! I truly hope there is more!
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  • Jessica Zweiacker
    January 1, 1970
    This book had me hooked from the very first page! A dark and suspense read set in a town, with ties back to the witch trials in Colonial America. The main character is a haunted by many different deaths that have affected her life, and have shaped who she has began. She is a police officer following in her fathers steps. I felt a connected to her, being that I have two sisters as well. It was my first book by this author, and it will not be the last. Anxiously awaiting the next book in this seri This book had me hooked from the very first page! A dark and suspense read set in a town, with ties back to the witch trials in Colonial America. The main character is a haunted by many different deaths that have affected her life, and have shaped who she has began. She is a police officer following in her fathers steps. I felt a connected to her, being that I have two sisters as well. It was my first book by this author, and it will not be the last. Anxiously awaiting the next book in this series. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for the advanced copy of the book.#netgalley
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  • Illustrious Illusions
    January 1, 1970
    This is my first book by Alice Blanchard, and I'm sure it won't be my last. This seems like a start to a great series. There was a lot of information and some a little repetitive and drawn out, but overall the story flowed well and was intriguing. there are a few twists that are rather unexpected and add to the unique elements of the story.
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  • Dawn
    January 1, 1970
    Definitely a book that gets to you. It kept me mesremised with a need to finish it and see what happened, and I certainly didn't see that ending! This author definitely has a craft to her storytelling and this is a book you are certainly going to remember. I will.I received this ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Dawn McGill Dalrymple
    January 1, 1970
    "Evil felt like something slipping into you-as deceptive and sleek as a scalpel blade." I really enjoyed this book. It has everything mystery/thriller lovers enjoy...witchcraft, age old who dunit, current murder. I thought this was a fast paced action packed read. I felt that the author's words flowed so well. "What did the dead think of us? What if they haunted the living out of spite?" These lines stuck with me throughout the book. I cannot wait for the the rest of the series! Thank you St Mar "Evil felt like something slipping into you-as deceptive and sleek as a scalpel blade." I really enjoyed this book. It has everything mystery/thriller lovers enjoy...witchcraft, age old who dunit, current murder. I thought this was a fast paced action packed read. I felt that the author's words flowed so well. "What did the dead think of us? What if they haunted the living out of spite?" These lines stuck with me throughout the book. I cannot wait for the the rest of the series! Thank you St Martin's Press/Minotaur books for the copy to read and review.
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  • Amber Sternitzke
    January 1, 1970
    What I like best about this mystery is that it starts right out with one and then it turns into many mysteries. There is a depth to this story that makes it compelling! I'm not familiar with this author or her other books. However, I'm glad I was selected as a raffle winner from Bookish First! A woman writer creating a masterful piece, interweaving topics I've not heard a lot of women delve into, is always a welcome. I'll be recommending this to my book club, and adult library patrons. It's grip What I like best about this mystery is that it starts right out with one and then it turns into many mysteries. There is a depth to this story that makes it compelling! I'm not familiar with this author or her other books. However, I'm glad I was selected as a raffle winner from Bookish First! A woman writer creating a masterful piece, interweaving topics I've not heard a lot of women delve into, is always a welcome. I'll be recommending this to my book club, and adult library patrons. It's gripping and intriguing not to mention keeping the mystery up with a fascinating ending. I don't want to give the plot away but you'll enjoy it! The writing style is fantastic too! Can't wait to read other novels by Alice Blanchard.
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  • D O'neal
    January 1, 1970
    #Trace of Evil#NetGalleyBurning Lake, New York, a quaint town near the Adirondack Mountains is best known for its evil past. Tourists flock there every year to see the site where witch hunts were held in the town's troubled past. Natalie Lockhart finds herself returning to her ill- fated hometown after trying to escape the dark memories she has of her sister's unsolved murder there. As a rookie cop, she is assigned to a massive cold case involving nine missing transients who my #Trace of Evil#NetGalleyBurning Lake, New York, a quaint town near the Adirondack Mountains is best known for its evil past. Tourists flock there every year to see the site where witch hunts were held in the town's troubled past. Natalie Lockhart finds herself returning to her ill- fated hometown after trying to escape the dark memories she has of her sister's unsolved murder there. As a rookie cop, she is assigned to a massive cold case involving nine missing transients who mysteriously disappeared years ago. But to Natalie, her sister, Grace's death remains the greatest mystery. To throw another twist into Natalie's investigation, a popular teacher has been found murdered and quickly grabs center stage. Trace of Evil is a spooky police procedural, that is filled with witchcraft and spells dating back to the town's dark past of hanging witches. The plot involves murder, lies, drugs, and madness. All is not as it seems with the characters that are vividly defined in the story. An evil cloud invades the very atmosphere of Burning Lake, and as the plot progresses, Natalie finds herself dangerously in the center of this evil. I found Natalie to be a compelling strong character with great determination, courage, and the desire to find the person responsible for her sister's murder. Daisy, the murdered teacher, was also a sympathetic and seemingly good person. But as the plot thickens, the reader finds it more difficult to tell the good guys from the bad ones. I found that the pervasive atmosphere of evil continued throughout the book, leading up to the explosive conclusion. With so many twists and turns, red herrings, and misdirection, I think most readers will be shocked at the ending!Sending a big thank you to the author, Alice Blanchard, and to the publishers, St. Martin's Press and Minotaur Books for my advanced copy of Trace of Evil. The publication date is set for December 3. 2019, and I hope this date will go on your calendar. I highly recommend this book with a five star rating!! Those who love good spooky thrillers will want this book on their To Be Read List!!
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  • Shannon
    January 1, 1970
    Thrilling...with an unexpected twist at the end!
  • Kimberly Young
    January 1, 1970
    Trace of Evil by Alice Blanchard was an exciting read! Natalie Lockhart., a female detective, was an exceptional lead character. I can't wait to read more entries in this series. This book had a very ominous feel to it and that added to the suspense. Thanks to Net Galley and the publisher for the ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. (4.5 stars)
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  • Laura
    January 1, 1970
    As the daughter of a police officer as well as the only woman detective in the department, Natalie Lockhart has to prove herself every day. The tiny town of Burning Lake, New York is renowned for killing three young women in 1712, so called witches, that were obviously innocent. Now the town celebrates the tragic deaths every fall by cashing in on everything occult. There are magic notions and potions to purchase at the gift shops and plenty of tourists to snatch them up. But there is a dark sid As the daughter of a police officer as well as the only woman detective in the department, Natalie Lockhart has to prove herself every day. The tiny town of Burning Lake, New York is renowned for killing three young women in 1712, so called witches, that were obviously innocent. Now the town celebrates the tragic deaths every fall by cashing in on everything occult. There are magic notions and potions to purchase at the gift shops and plenty of tourists to snatch them up. But there is a dark side to this tiny town. Many of the residents, especially teens, dabble in the occult, join covens and practice their spells. Back in her youth, Natalie was once a member of a coven. But she left that far behind. Most of the covens are harmless, but some, just like some people, are pure evil. Oddly enough, in this small town there have been nine seemingly random disappearances over the past few years, and Natalie is given the task to find a common thread among them or at least solve on or two. After suffering the loss of her sister to a violent crime as a child, Natalie takes working these cold case files seriously. But she is pulled from the cold cases and thrust into a shocking murder scene. As fate would have it, Daisy, another person that Natalie has known all her life, has been murdered. The suspect is in a coma, and things are just not adding up. Secrets held close by Daisy are unearthed. Was the killer someone Daisy knew? Maybe the little town known for burning witches over a century ago has a serial killer with a vendetta on the loose. Either way, Natalie will not stop until he or she is found and brought to justice – but at what cost? This fast-paced thriller is impossible to put down. Ms. Blanchard’s storytelling pulls you in and doesn’t let you go until the shattering last pages. The characters come to life making you love or hate them, furiously reading so you can see what happens next. Delving into the past to save todays would be victims, Natalie takes you on her journey, feeding us clues and conclusions as they reveal themselves.This is the first book by award winning author Alice Blanchard that I have read, but will not be the last. Trace of Evil will be available in December 2019, so put it on your Christmas list now. In the meantime, check out her other books, she has several that I can’t wait to add to read.DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy from Bookish First in exchange for a fair and honest review. Copyright © 2019 Laura Hartman
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  • Olivia
    January 1, 1970
    TRACE OF EVIL was a completely engrossing and intense procedural. Natalie is a rookie detective in her hometown, as her police officer father had raised her to be. Natalie has the wobbly desk that the more senior people don't want, and now she is inadvertently assigned to a major case. When she was driving another officer home after drinks at the bar, they find his pregnant wife murdered. Natalie chases down the leads and evidence.At the same time, she was also given some cold cases, TRACE OF EVIL was a completely engrossing and intense procedural. Natalie is a rookie detective in her hometown, as her police officer father had raised her to be. Natalie has the wobbly desk that the more senior people don't want, and now she is inadvertently assigned to a major case. When she was driving another officer home after drinks at the bar, they find his pregnant wife murdered. Natalie chases down the leads and evidence.At the same time, she was also given some cold cases, and something about them is giving her new avenues. When someone she knows disappears, they become even more important. Working both lines of investigation at the same time, this book is anything but boring. I became quickly invested in these characters, within the first chapter, and I loved following these cases. There was never a dull moment, and I had plenty of guesses- but none close to the actual perpetrators. This is certainly a book that keeps the reader guessing with all kinds of twists and turns. When you get to the end, the clues start adding up, begging for another reread with the ending in sight (so you can catch all things you missed earlier).The new angle to this series is in the town and Wicca culture. Not as famous as Salem, this town also hung some witches. The religion persists really strongly among young people, and it plays into the things they find and the way the cases go. I would definitely love to read more from Natalie and in this town setting. There is also a light love interest for Natalie, and I assume this will be developed more in the future. While Natalie herself is fleshed out well and we get a great feel for her character, the primary focus of the book is on the cases, and I really enjoyed it.Captivating and completely engrossing, TRACE OF EVIL is a delicious page turner that will keep you guessing all the way to the surprising end. Highly recommend for anyone who loves mysteries and/or procedurals.Please note that I received an ARC from the publisher through netgalley. All opinions are my own.
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  • Linda Bond
    January 1, 1970
    Stand-alone book author Alice Blanchard enters the thriller series shelves with her first novel about rookie detective Natalie Lockhart. She’s young, she has a past (who doesn’t in the sleep little town of Burning Lake, NY) but she also has a good heart and the need to find out what happened to 9 missing transients. What she finds, however, may be more than murder, and it soon involves more than the original missing people. There’s something distinctly evil lurking in the hearts and minds of at Stand-alone book author Alice Blanchard enters the thriller series shelves with her first novel about rookie detective Natalie Lockhart. She’s young, she has a past (who doesn’t in the sleep little town of Burning Lake, NY) but she also has a good heart and the need to find out what happened to 9 missing transients. What she finds, however, may be more than murder, and it soon involves more than the original missing people. There’s something distinctly evil lurking in the hearts and minds of at least some of the town’s residents. The question is, can Natalie keep her head above water long enough to learn the truth and bring justice to light for these crimes. Ann Cleeves calls Ms. Blanchard’s writing “powerful” and I could not agree more!I met this book at Auntie's Bookstore in Spokane, WA
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  • Kelly
    January 1, 1970
    Bookish First Impressions Giveaway This story begins well-organized and nicely describes some of the main characters with enough information to not feel confused. I enjoy reading mystery, suspense novels so this grabbed my attention. I was instantly drawn into the story and so sad when the First Impression ended. I need to know more! There’s the small town and cold cases and mystery of this new death. Of course, there seems to be a romantic component waiting to be unraveled.August 9, Bookish First Impressions Giveaway This story begins well-organized and nicely describes some of the main characters with enough information to not feel confused. I enjoy reading mystery, suspense novels so this grabbed my attention. I was instantly drawn into the story and so sad when the First Impression ended. I need to know more! There’s the small town and cold cases and mystery of this new death. Of course, there seems to be a romantic component waiting to be unraveled.August 9, 2019 Book received from Bookish First Giveaway in exchange for an unbiased review.This is an amazing twisted story with a strong female protagonist in a small, quiet town. It begins with Detective Natalie Lockhart working on a cold case for the Burning Lake Police Department. The unsolved mystery of nine missing persons has haunted the town for years. While digging up new leads the team is unexpectedly drawn to the bloody scene of Daisy Buckner, a detective’s pregnant wife. The two mysteries unravel within the scope of the story revealing shocking secrets from the past and present. There is a strong storyline with historical background of the characters so that although the story had a satisfactory ending, one could see where Natalie could continue her story in following books.
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