The Empty Kayak

Fiction - Mystery - Murder
418 Pages
Reviewed on 05/07/2023
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Jodé Millman is the author of the “Queen City Crimes” Series. She has been the recipient of the Independent Press, American Fiction, and Independent Publisher Bronze IPPY Awards, and was a Finalist for the Romance Writers of America Daphne DuMaurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense, the Clue, and the Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award. She’s an attorney, the host/producer of The Backstage with the Bardavon podcast, and the creator of The Writer’s Law School. Jodé lives with her family in the Hudson Valley, where she is at work on her next novel inspired by true crimes in the region she calls home.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne-Marie Reynolds for Readers' Favorite

The Empty Kayak by Jodé Millman is a mystery with a difference. Olivia and Kyle are kayaking along the Hudson River when a storm rolls in out of nowhere. While Olivia finds her way back to shore, her fiancé, Kyle, doesn’t. Detective Ebony Jones arrives at the river to help them, but discovering who the missing man is sends shockwaves through her. He’s her best friend’s ex-boyfriend, and Jessie and Kyle share a daughter. Ebony must investigate the mystery of what happened to Kyle; while Jessie seeks justice, neither woman is prepared for what they will face. Lies, betrayal, and earth-shattering secrets will drive a wedge between everyone involved, but Ebony and Jessie need to uncover the truth, no matter what. Will they learn what happened to Kyle? Will the truth tear them apart? And where does Olivia fit into everything?

The Empty Kayak by Jodé Millman is a wonderfully tense mystery with a strong focus on relationships and careers destroying lives. Although it is a police procedural novel, it is more about the personal and emotional aspects. It is part of a series, but I found it easy to read as a standalone novel. Although the characters are well-developed, reading the first two books in the series will provide an even better understanding of the two main protagonists, Ebony and Jessie. It has a unique storyline, and the tension builds with every page, reeling you in to discover the truth behind Kyle’s disappearance. The suspense draws you deeper into this gripping tale; you won’t put it down until you’re done. Of course, then you’ll want to read the rest of the series to get to know these fantastic characters better.