The Taken: A Hazel Micallef Mystery

( 12 )

Overview

Detective Inspector Hazel Micallef is having a bad year. After major back surgery, she moves into her ex-husband’s home to be cared for by his new wife. As if that weren’t enough to cope with, her octogenarian mother is insisting that Hazel end her dependence on painkillers—an insistence that takes the form of secretly flushing Hazel’s stash down the toilet.

It’s almost a relief when Hazel gets a call about a body found in one of the lakes near Port Dundas. But what raises the ...

See more details below
Paperback
$11.51
BN.com price
(Save 17%)$13.95 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (31) from $1.99   
  • New (14) from $1.99   
  • Used (17) from $1.99   
The Taken: A Hazel Micallef Mystery

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$10.49
BN.com price
(Save 24%)$13.95 List Price

Overview

Detective Inspector Hazel Micallef is having a bad year. After major back surgery, she moves into her ex-husband’s home to be cared for by his new wife. As if that weren’t enough to cope with, her octogenarian mother is insisting that Hazel end her dependence on painkillers—an insistence that takes the form of secretly flushing Hazel’s stash down the toilet.

It’s almost a relief when Hazel gets a call about a body found in one of the lakes near Port Dundas. But what raises the hair on the back of her neck is that the local paper has just published the first installment of a serialized story featuring such a scenario. Even before they head out to the lake, she and Detective Constable James Wingate know they are being played. But who is pulling their strings and why are not clear, nor is what they find at the lake at all what they expected. This is no simple drowning accident or even a straightforward murder. It’s Micallef herself who is snared, caught up in a cryptic game being played by a maven of the art of deception.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
THE TAKEN (star)

What looks like a prank lures a Canadian police chief into an investigation of a bone-chilling crime.

Hazel Micallef (The Calling, 2008) is none too pleased to be recuperating from back surgery in the home of her ex-husband. But her mother Emily is too frail to care for her 62-year-old daughter, and Andrew Micallef's new wife Glynnis seems determined to be nerve-wrackingly kind to her invalid predecessor. So Hazel barely minds being called back to the Port Dundas OPS when DC James Wingate, who never really wanted to be in charge of the provincial Ontario outpost, gets a report of a body pulled from Lake Gannon by tourists. The "body" turns out to be a mannequin, but a number stamped on the headless dummy's torso leads to a video feed of what looks like someone held captive in a basement. Meanwhile, The Port Dundas Record begins to publish chapters of a work by local writer Colin Eldwin, whose plot eerily tracks the Lake Gannon discovery. Eldwin is gone; his wife suggests he's in Toronto cheating on her. But the chapters keep arriving, each with a clue to a crime that hasn't yet been discovered, much less solved. And as the video feed becomes more disturbing, Hazel finds herself at odds with Ray Greene, the former deputy slated to become her boss as the provincial force is consolidated, and with the Toronto police, who resent Ontario's intrusion onto city turf.

Beautiful writing is just one of the pleasures of this Chinese-box puzzler. -Kirkus Reviews (starred)

Publishers Weekly
Lovers of twisty but plausible plotting and an out-of-the-ordinary lead will embrace Wolfe's standout second police procedural featuring Canadian Det. Insp. Hazel Micallef (after 2009's The Calling). A bizarre case brings Micallef, who depends on her ex-husband and his new wife as she recovers from a serious back injury suffered in the line of duty, back into action sooner than planned. A body fishermen dredge up from the bottom of a lake in Port Dundas, Ont., turns out just to be a mannequin, but numbers on the dummy lead Micallef to a Web site streaming video that appears to show a man being tortured by his abductor. In a frantic search for clues, Micallef concludes that the kidnapping is somehow linked to a fictional story being run in installments in the local newspaper. It's a testament to Wolfe's storytelling gifts that her reveal of the criminal's identity about midway through heightens rather than diminishes the tension. (July)
Kirkus Reviews
What looks like a prank lures a Canadian police chief into an investigation of a bone-chilling crime. Hazel Micallef (The Calling, 2008) is none too pleased to be recuperating from back surgery in the home of her ex-husband. But her mother Emily is too frail to care for her 62-year-old daughter, and Andrew Micallef's new wife Glynnis seems determined to be nerve-wrackingly kind to her invalid predecessor. So Hazel barely minds being called back to the Port Dundas OPS when DC James Wingate, who never really wanted to be in charge of the provincial Ontario outpost, gets a report of a body pulled from Lake Gannon by tourists. The "body" turns out to be a mannequin, but a number stamped on the headless dummy's torso leads to a video feed of what looks like someone held captive in a basement. Meanwhile, The Port Dundas Record begins to publish chapters of a work by local writer Colin Eldwin, whose plot eerily tracks the Lake Gannon discovery. Eldwin is gone; his wife suggests he's in Toronto cheating on her. But the chapters keep arriving, each with a clue to a crime that hasn't yet been discovered, much less solved. And as the video feed becomes more disturbing, Hazel finds herself at odds with Ray Greene, the former deputy slated to become her boss as the provincial force is consolidated, and with the Toronto police, who resent Ontario's intrusion onto city turf. Beautiful writing is just one of the pleasures of this Chinese-box puzzler.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780547521732
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 6/23/2011
  • Series: Hazel Micallef Series , #2
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 632,210
  • Product dimensions: 5.41 (w) x 7.94 (h) x 1.07 (d)

Meet the Author

INGER ASH WOLFE is the author of The Calling .

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

Thursday, May 19
Glynnis Pedersen's house was full of clocks. There were silver mantel clocks with lunar white faces, wall clocks made from antique car parts, clocks created from the refuse of old metal advertisements, a couple of small digital clocks, one grand_father clock in the front hall that no longer worked, and, beside the bed in the basement apartment, an LED motion clock that displayed a message in mid-air between two prongs. This one Glynnis had programmed to read "Rise and Shine!!" which message it displayed no matter one's state of wakefulness. For Detective Inspector Hazel Micallef, once a Mrs. Pedersen herself, it only served as a reminder of whom, exactly, Glynnis Pedersen was rising and shining with.
 To have to take charity from a hated person was bad enough, but to do it out of necessity entailed a diminishment of one's sense of self that Hazel found hard to accept. She knew loss of pride was an occupational hazard for those who were proud, but did it have to mean being vanquished as well? Sometimes it seemed to Hazel that the situation she found herself in was one concocted for her by the Greek gods. To punish what, she couldn't be sure. But she had a feeling she was going to find out.
 She was now a tenant in her ex-husband's house. The roots of this strange situation were in an evening she'd spent the previous fall with him at The Laughing Crow. It was there, over drinks, that she'd hinted she might need some extra-marital nursing if her damaged back finally gave in. She'd asked him to imagine her eighty-seven-year-old mother carrying her to the bathroom. He'd fairly blanched at what she was asking him, and Glynnis, hearing of it, laughed at it as if it were a hare-brained scam cooked up by one of her drug-addled clients. But then December had happened. A serial killer had drifted through their town like a deadly gas. A murder under her own roof. And a night in the bone-chilling cold and dark that left her back shattered and her mother nearly dead. Remembering, the events lined up in her mind with a kind of dreadful inevitability, but that didn't make them any more believable. She'd had emergency surgery, but by the end of March it became clear that, in the words of her specialist, her back had "failed." Your first surgery is your best chance, your second is your last, was something Dr. Pass had been fond of saying, but he'd stopped saying it in March. By that point, last chances were all Hazel had.
 She and her mother had lived together not unpleasantly in the house in Pember Lake for over three years, since her divorce from Andrew. But the pain was keeping her from work, and more than once after the new year her mother had supported her on frail shoulders and taken Hazel to the bathroom: the hyperbolic scenario she'd described to Andrew boiled down to something real. Emily had finally gone to Andrew and Glynnis and laid it out. She characterized the discussion as "brief."
 "I used legal language so they'd understand it," she explained to Hazel. "I said the statute of limitations on marital duties was five years and that it covered all pre-existing conditions."
 "How did Glynnis like that?"
 "She was smiling so tightly I thought her lipstick would squirt off her little lips." Emily smiled herself, that wicked smile that said she'd been in charge her whole life. "That woman has a mouth like a cat's anus," she said. "Andrew understood though."
 "And?"
 "They've given their tenants a month's notice. Family, they said."
 "Well that's nice," said Hazel. "At least we're still family."

She lay in bed, staring at the small, high window in the wall opposite. The suggestion of late May sunlight was faint, but her mother had assured her it was there. She popped the lid of the little orange vial she was gripping in her fist and put the edge of it against her bottom lip. The thick, white pill tumbled onto her tongue. Sometimes she chewed it, this salty, bitter capsule. It worked faster this way, and the truth was, it had a little kick on it if it went down pulverized. It was now ten days after her second operation. She was taking three of them a day and there were two more refills on the label of the little orange vial. Sometimes the pain came back before it was time for the next pill and she'd take it early, send it like a fireman down a pole, the alarms shrieking everywhere. The one she'd just taken was already working: its promised six to eight hours of relief had begun with the May light outside the tiny window suddenly thickening. Glynnis might have had her clocks, but she had her pills, and they told the time with utter accuracy.
 In her current state, she had more in common now with her younger daughter, Martha, that beloved and feckless child who kept Hazel more or less in a state of constant worry. Jobless, loveless, dogged by depression and incapable of making a constructive choice, Hazel sometimes wondered if Martha's problems were selfmade, or if they were genetics. Looking at either side of the family (Andrew? Emily?) it was hard to credit heredity, but shipwrecked and miserable as Hazel was, she had to wonder if there wasn't some kind of tendency in the blood to fall apart. Maybe only on the Micallef side. She hadn't seen Martha in a couple of months, and she'd been careful to keep upbeat on the phone with her: no point in getting the girl more worked up than she normally was. Hazel knew that Martha teetered on a thin line when it came to her mother: on one side was resentment for everything Hazel did and had to do for her, on the other was a savage terror of loss. It meant shielding her, softening reality for her. And with her elder daughter, Emilia, living out west, it meant that Hazel felt even more alone than she needed to. But such were the facts of her motherhood.

Her own mother came down the stairs bearing a tray. Andrew's beef stew, one of three things he cooked, all in the key of cow. Emily put the tray down beside the bed and arranged the pillows behind her daughter's back so she could sit up straight enough to eat. It was this routine three times a day: the prisoner brought her meals. "Glynnis too tired to cook?"
 "She's got a late night," her mother said.
 "He should keep tabs on her." She accepted the bowl of steaming stew and the end of a crusty loaf. "She's got a wandering eye."
 "That's wishful thinking."
 Hazel tucked into the meal. Everyone had a beef-stew "secret"; Andrew's was Guinness. The only real secret was time. Given a pound of stringy, nigh-inedible beef, a few cups of water, two mealy potatoes, and maybe an onion, anyone with six hours could make a perfectly edible stew. She leaned forward to put the fork in her mouth and her scarred lower back resisted her. The pain was different than it had been before either surgery: it wasn't sharp, like there was broken glass rattling around in her; it was deep and resonant. Seated in her marrow. She had to breathe through it. "You eat?" she asked her mother.
 "I kept Andrew company."
 "Are you working both ends against the middle?"
 "What's the other end, Hazel?"
 "Glynnis."
 "I gather that makes you the middle."
 "I'm always the middle, Mother."
 "May 26 you get to be the middle, Hazel. Birthdays and anniversaries only. All the other days you're on the outside looking in, like the rest of us."
 "You had to remind me, huh?"
 "Sixty-two," said Emily. "My little girl is finally going to be a woman."
 Emily continued to leaf through the growing pile of magazines beside the bed. Celebrity rags, local newspapers, travel magazines with colourful full-page pictures that teased Hazel with hints of a future out of bed. She ate in silence as her mother idly flipped the pages of one of the celebrity magazines. She held up a picture of a woman no older than twenty, one of the new crop of pop stars whose names neither of them could ever remember. She was parading down a street in Hollywood in a dress big enough to cover a volleyball, almost, with a grease-soaked paper bag in one hand and her purse slung over her shoulder. A tiny dog with a pointy face poked out of the top of the purse. "In a just society," said Emily, "almost everything this child is doing would be illegal. She should be arrested, stuck in a housecoat, and made to listen to Guy Lombardo records until she smartens up." She held the page up to her daughter. At that age, the worst either of Hazel's daughters had ever done was wear torn jeans, listen to Madonna, and occasionally puke hard lemonade all over the bathroom. How did girls like this one get so lost? Did people get lost quickly, or did it happen over time?
 Emily collected the tray off the bed. "You want dessert?"
 "No."
 She held up a newspaper. Thursday's Westmuir Record. "You read this yet?"
 "It's probably the same as last Thursday's. Not to mention Monday's. But leave it."
 "You're falling behind on your papers. You don't want your news getting stale, do you?" Hazel laughed at the thought of events passing so quickly in Westmuir that you'd have to make an effort to keep up. "At least it'll pass the time without your having to resort to staring at pictures of nearly naked girls eating hamburgers." Apart from the biweekly visits from Detective Constable James Wingate, the Record was her only window on the world she lived in. The paper that had been a thorn in her side for all of the previous fall was now necessary to her sanity. She held her hand out for it.
 "What are you going to do now?" Hazel asked.
 "I told Andrew I'd do the crossword with him."
 "I should have seen Andrew's facility with those things as a sign."
 "Of what?"
 "That he knew how to disguise himself."
 Emily Micallef patted her daughter's hand. "If he didn't, he'd be the only man on earth who lacked the talent." She put Hazel's fork and napkin in the bowl and moved the bowl into the middle of the tray. When she got to the door that led to the upstairs hall, Hazel called to her.
 "Mum?"
 "What is it?"
 "Ask him to come see me. Please?"
 "Read the paper," Emily said. "They've already started the summer short story. The Record's gift to us all for putting on our best May-long-weekend faces."
 Hazel glanced at the headline - "Welcome Cottagers!" - and immediately put the paper down.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 12 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(4)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2012

    The Taken by Inger Ash Wolfe

    I love this series! I could not put the nook down. Also the humor between mother and daughter is so well written Daisy

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 16, 2011

    Great mystery, interesting characters, highly recommend.

    This was a great mystery, loved the main character, she reminded me of Jane Tennison in Prime Suspect. I was sorry when the book ended. It had good character development, short, precise dialogue, well thought out lesser characters and a good buildup of suspense. Would love to read more by this author.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2014

    K

    J

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2013

    Ick

    Couldn't get past Hazel allowing her mother to make her decisions for her AGAIN. THis series is well written, but I just cannot stand this relationship.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 11, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 16, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 26, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 7, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 3, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)