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Reviewed by Deborah Lloyd for Readers' Favorite
This gripping story begins with Danny Parker, a fighter pilot in the Marine Corps during WWI, stationed in the Argonne Forest of France. Barely escaping a skirmish with the Germans, Danny returned to his hometown, Long Beach, California. Danny is not sure what kind of career he desires. Before the war, he spent three years in a seminary to become a Catholic priest. He had broken the heart of his childhood friend, Joyce Villereal, several years earlier when he revealed his possible vocation. After living the horrors of war, Danny decided he needed to see if a relationship with Joyce would be possible. While he was overseas, Joyce had pursued her dream of becoming an actress. She became a rising movie star; however, she had disappeared the month earlier. The Los Angeles Police Department put little effort into finding her and soon closed the case. Danny, however, devoted himself to finding her in Missing Star by Don Westenhaver.
This novel contains interesting historical information, as well as an intriguing, suspense-filled plot. From the discovery of oil in the Long Beach area, prohibition, and blatant corruption in police departments, the early years of the movie industry, and more, this book contains a wealth of history. Mr. Westenhaver is a talented writer, demonstrating an expertise for interweaving facts with fiction, engaging the reader throughout the entire book. There is an easy flow to the story, making the book a fun read. Yet, the reader may have learned a great deal about the people who lived through this era. Don Westenhaver’s book, Missing Star, is an outstanding fictional work!