48 hours: The vanishing by Gabrielle Lord

cover image

48 Hours series book 1. Scholastic, 2018. ISBN 9781743629758
(Age: 11+) Highly recommended. Themes: Kidnapping, Detectives, Murder enquiries. Jazz's best friend, Anika has been kidnapped. Her blog about a dusty old journal she found hidden in her house seems to have attracted the wrong sort of attention. Her parents are adamant that the police not be called as they wait by the phone for instructions from the kidnappers. So Jazz, an amateur detective who sees everything through a detective's eye, decides to find Anika. But she needs help, and the only other person with a brain like hers is her mortal enemy, Phoenix, whose mother just happens to be a forensic scientist with a lab at her home!
Together they search Anika's house for clues, using the correct gear from the lab, but the CCTV reveals nothing, until a loose floorboard opens up a portal ripe for avoiding being seen. Gathering DNA evidence along with fingerprints, the results lead them to a cold case.
But the 48 hours deadline is looming large over their heads, so time is of the utmost importance.
An exciting opening book in a new series, 48 Hours will have readers looking forward to the next in the series, as Lord offers a range of research techniques for the amateur detective. The Vanishing offers two new characters, sometimes at odds with each other, but combining their skills to find an answer to the question as quickly as possible.
Well written, with plot twists to keep readers going, and forensic detail to intrigue, the series offers an easy to read set of books for middle school people.
Fran Knight