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The Mountains Wild


The Mountains Wild

It’s been 23 years since Maggie D’arcy’s cousin, Erin, went missing while living in Ireland. Maggie remembers the day they got the call. Uncle Danny wasn’t up for the trip, so she volunteered to go over and help the Irish Gardaí in whatever way she could. But all too soon the case went cold, and she returned home to Long Island. Now, once again, Maggie receives a call from a friend in the Gardaí. A scarf has been found on a trail in the mountains where Erin was known to have gone walking. They believe it was hers. Maggie thinks so, too; she gave her that scarf as a Christmas present. And there’s more troubling news: Another young woman, a girl named Niamh, has disappeared.
Maggie rushes to Dublin, knowing that any assistance she offers may have to be finessed, because the police procedures don’t allow sharing information with outsiders. She is now an experienced detective on Long Island, so she believes she can help. In fact, a case she solved by capturing a kidnapper right before he killed his victim received international coverage. But that won’t change things with another department, especially a foreign one. Still, she has been haunted by the mystery of what happened to Erin for over two decades, so she has to at least try.

"Far beyond a simple mystery, THE MOUNTAINS WILD is a gorgeous rendering on paper of Ireland in all its beauty."

Roly Byrne, Maggie’s old contact in the Gardaí, must walk a thin line. His empathy for the family’s distress leaves him wanting to ease their worry, but he has to adhere to the office standards. Maggie has her ways, though, of insinuating herself into the case. She remembers most of the people who were interviewed 23 years ago and hopes that reviewing their statements may break loose an important bit of information. Maybe new eyes will catch something overlooked long ago. But she must be careful. As she’s well aware, danger lurks when stalking a killer.

Maggie looks enough like Erin to cause alarm when confronting persons of interest. In fact, a flicker of recognition flashes across the face of more than one. And since Erin was last seen walking into the woods on a remote trail, Maggie is putting herself at risk by retracing her cousin’s steps. Plus, there’s the troubling fact that several other women have gone missing in the intervening years. A pattern, if one exists, indicates that the police have two weeks, maybe slightly more, to find Niamh. Time is running out fast. Maggie couldn’t help Erin, but she’s desperate to save Niamh.
Far beyond a simple mystery, THE MOUNTAINS WILD is a gorgeous rendering on paper of Ireland in all its beauty. Sarah Stewart Taylor captures the moodiness of the Irish mist, the bustle of Dublin’s streets, and the crisp bite of the morning air. You can hear the Irish brogue in the pubs, smell the Guinness in the pint glasses, and feel the warmth of the peat fire after stepping in from the cold. Taylor has a lyrical style to her writing that makes every sentence a pleasure to read, and every pleasurable sentence brings readers closer to  answering the crucial question: What happened to Erin? This is a five-star read.

Reviewed by Kate Ayers on June 25, 2020

The Mountains Wild
by Sarah Stewart Taylor

  • Publication Date: June 15, 2021
  • Genres: Fiction, Mystery
  • Mass Market Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books
  • ISBN-10: 1250796148
  • ISBN-13: 9781250796141