Everything is going Eliza Blake's way. She is the host of the
top-rated KEY News morning show, has a beautiful daughter named
Janie, close friends and all the advantages money can buy.
It hasn't always been so easy, however. Eliza lost her husband to
illness before Janie was born. After giving birth, she experienced
a nervous breakdown but has managed to work her way back to good
mental health and a happy and well-rounded life. Everything is
coming up roses. But as we all know, roses have thorns. And even
the most well-tended garden has weeds, as Eliza will soon find
The media cannot get enough of Eliza. They focus endlessly on her
professional and personal lives, and she is splashed on the cover
of every tabloid and periodical from coast to coast. Unfortunately,
sometimes notoriety comes with a price.
Eliza returns home from work one day to find the door open, and
seven-year-old Janie and her caregiver, Mrs. Garcia, are nowhere to
be found. Not one to panic, she assumes they have made a trip into
town. She falls asleep after a busy day only to awaken later that
evening to find that neither Janie nor Mrs. Garcia have returned.
Panic sets in.
Eliza dives into action by notifying the authorities and her close
friends. Soon everyone rallies around this stoic single mom in the
hopes of locating the missing caregiver and her precious
At first it seems that Mrs. Garcia has taken Janie as she picked
her up from summer camp without Eliza's permission. Eliza knows
Mrs. Garcia, however, and she'd trust her with her life. It soon
becomes apparent, though, that Mrs. Garcia took the little girl
under duress. But who on earth wants the child, where are they
keeping her and what are their plans for a youngster whose life has
All of Eliza's fan mail is scrutinized for clues. The FBI is called
in. Child sex offenders in a 50-mile radius are contacted and
checked out. No stone is left unturned as everyone knows they are
racing against the clock and that each hour that passes decrease
little Janie's odds of coming home alive or even being found at
When a psychic appears at the police station, she is written off as
a nutcase, but eventually, when her visions check out, she is
called back in to share her information. While the police remain
unconvinced, Eliza clings to the belief that this woman may be the
very one to help her locate Janie before it's too late.
IT ONLY TAKES A MOMENT is Mary Jane Clark's 11th novel. Previously
a long-time producer in the world of broadcast journalism, she has
covered numerous criminal investigations. She is also the daughter
of an FBI agent who specialized in kidnappings, making her
well-versed in the details that make this book a winner.
Reviewed by Amie Taylor on January 22, 2011