Valley of the Lost: Book summary and reviews of Valley of the Lost by Vicki Delany

Valley of the Lost

By Vicki Delany

Valley of the Lost
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  • Published in USA  Feb 2009,
    300 pages.

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Book Summary

In the bucolic mountain town of Trafalgar, British Columbia, a young woman is found dead of a heroin overdose, her baby lying at her side. While this should be an open-and-shut drug case, restraint marks on the victim suggest that the death might not have been completely accidental.

As the investigation into the young woman's death and life grows, the case becomes increasingly personal for Probationary Constable Molly Smith and Sergeant John Winters. Only two things are known about the dead woman: her first name is Ashley, and she has a three-month-old baby boy. Who was she? And was this is just a drug deal gone wrong, or is there something more sinister at play? Smith's mother, Lucky, has taken in the orphaned baby: does he hold the key to solving his mother's murder?

Meanwhile, Winters's wife, Eliza, is considering accepting a modeling contract with the same resort development that seems to be ripping the close-knit community apart. Has the controversial project pushed a member of this quiet community to murder?

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Intertwined subplots, complex characters, and an easy prose style make this a great follow-up to Delany's debut, In the Shadow of the Glacier." - Library Journal.

"Delaney explores the social dynamics of a small mountain community as well as deftly handling the plot's twists and turns as it builds to a pulse-pounding conclusion." - Publishers Weekly.

".... contrasts the beautiful British Columbia wilderness, vividly described by Delany, with the sober realities of contemporary crime." - Booklist.

"Ingratiating until three-quarters of the way through, when everything falls apart with some exceptionally silly plotting." - Kirkus Reviews.

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Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Zoe, Naperville Public Library, IL
Heroin, Hippies and Even Mounties
A fun, fast-paced mystery set in a small mountain town in British Columbia. Smith and Winters, the police team who are the mainstays on the case, both come with backgrounds and baggage that makes us want to know more about their histories, which we hope the author will provide through additional books in the series. Written with a great sense of place and character development.

Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Sue
Another Good One From Vicki Delany
This is a sequel to Vicki Delany's first book, In The Shadow of the Glacier - and a good one, too. My only negative comment is that if one has not read the first book, it's easy to get confused, as some things that occurred in the first book are not recapped in the second. Otherwise, the characters are engaging and likable, the mystery is fast-paced and intriguing, with a neat twist and a satisfactory ending. I am looking forward to reading more in this series.

Rated 3 of 5 of 5 by La Deana
Valley of the Lost
Valley of the Lost has an unusual cast of characters, from an aging hippie mother to a young female officer who still lives at home , victim that no one know anything about and an infant left at the scene. That being said the characters never seemed quite fleshed out to me. I usually become attached to the characters while reading a book but that never happened with this book. The plot had some good twists but didn't flow. I would read this book if it was the only one I brought on a plane otherwise I would look for something else to read.

Rated 3 of 5 of 5 by Jan (Saratoga, CA)
Valley of the Lost
Funky characters, beautiful setting and interesting plot turns made this an OK mystery. I liked the flowery and very descriptive writing in the beginning, but it got to be a little too much by the end. I read the first two thirds of the book easily, but it took much longer to read the last third.

Although this was a second book in a series, and I have not read the first book, I did not feel that I was missing too much information that it hindered my enjoyment of this book.

Satisfying, but not spectacular. Would most likely appeal to those who already love mysteries.

Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Emily
Valley of the Lost
A colorful setting in the southeastern corner of British Columbia, strong, realistic characters, and a suspenseful gripping plot make this mystery novel a fascinating read. It is the second novel (do read the first) in a series featuring young Constable Molly
Smith of the Trafalgar Police,along with her sergeant, her family, friends and foes and a mysterious baby found in the woods by Molly's mother. The action is fast-paced and the many unexpected turns in the plot keep the reader's attention looking
toward the solution. For someone brought up on stories of British Columbia this was an especially enjoyable reading experience.

Rated 2 of 5 of 5 by Christine
Lost in the Valley of the Lost
Valley of the Lost by Vicky Delany has all the elements of a good mystery, a beautiful setting, quirky characters and a murder; however, it was more like being lost in the "valley of the lost" than reading about it. Delany introduced over 20 characters in the first 30 pages and unlike other writers in her genre; she did not give enough background for the reader to pick up the story line or provide a desire to return to the first novel for more more details. I wish Delany had spent more time fleshing out the main characters of Molly Smith or Sgt. Winters than racking up some peculiar body count where the author with the most characters in a novel wins. There were just too many holes in the plot to make it an entertaining read.

...11 more reader reviews

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More Information

Vicki Delany lives in Oakville, Ontario, where she is employed as a systems analyst, but her first love is the Canadian wilderness where her novels are set. She is a member of Crime Writers of Canada and is the editor of the Sisters in Crime, Toronto Chapter, newsletter.

For more information, see the author's home page.

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