This thriller does its job but misses the mark on being a great read.
In The Keeper Meg O'Brien produces a thriller that keeps the suspense up but still comes up short from being a truly satisfying read.
The plot concerns the kidnapping of Charly Hayes, the daughter of a Nathan and Brooke who are divorced. Accusations of parental kidnapping fly from both parties and eventually Brooke is secretly sent to John Creed, an ex-cop who is known as the Keeper (Keeper of the Flame, Keeper of the Faith, Keeper of the Files) who is unofficially attached to LAPD as a one-man department to find missing children. When things get rough, he has a team of volunteers to help him out - both inside and outside the department. Creed is an emotional train wreck who obsesses since his own son has been missing for 5 years.
Some of O'Brien's transitions from one character to the next are clunky and the relationship between Creed and Brooke is telegraphed from the first page that they meet. O'Brien has several discrepencies, such as having Brooke chamber a round in a revolver and using plain, untreated tap water to clean a fish tank. Those are annoying, but mostly I found myself wishing that this same premise for a plot were re-written by someone else who could make the characters come alive a bit better. The character of Brooke just did not work for me. Unfortunately, despite the name of the book, The Keeper and his team were not the focus of the book. If they had been, it probably would have been a better book.
Once again, it's not a bad book, but it certainly isn't a great one either.
I rate this book 3 stars out of 5.
Reviewed on June 9, 2006.
"We are of opinion that instead of letting books grow moldy behind an iron grating, far from the vulgar gaze, it is better to let them wear out by being read." - Jules Verne
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