Thin Air

Thin Air

by Lisa Gray


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A Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and Amazon Charts bestseller.

“Lisa Gray explodes onto the literary stage with this taut, edge-of-the-seat thriller, and her headstrong protagonist, Jessica Shaw, reminiscent of Lee Child’s Jack Reacher, delivers a serious punch.” —Robert Dugoni, New York Times bestselling author

Private investigator Jessica Shaw is used to getting anonymous tips. But after receiving a photo of a three-year-old kidnapped from Los Angeles twenty-five years ago, Jessica is stunned to recognize the little girl as herself.

Eager for answers, Jessica heads to LA’s dark underbelly. When she learns that her biological mother was killed the night she was abducted, Jessica’s determined to solve a case the police have forgotten. Meanwhile, veteran LAPD detective Jason Pryce is in the midst of a gruesome investigation into a murdered college student moonlighting as a prostitute. A chance encounter leads to them crossing paths, but Jessica soon realizes that Pryce is hiding something about her father’s checkered history and her mother’s death.

To solve her mother’s murder and her own disappearance, Jessica must dig into the past and find the secrets buried there. But the air gets thinner as she crawls closer to the truth, and it’s getting harder and harder to breathe.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781477818305
Publisher: Amazon Publishing
Publication date: 06/01/2019
Series: Jessica Shaw Series , #1
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 68,101
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Lisa Gray has been writing professionally for years, serving as the chief Scottish soccer writer at the Press Association and the books editor at the Daily Record Saturday Magazine. Lisa currently works as a journalist for the Daily Record and Sunday Mail. This is her first crime novel. Learn more at

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Thin Air 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
Achour_2019 6 months ago
Excellent read. This is my first novel from Lisa Gray and it will not be the last one. It was really an enjoyable and gripping book. Unlike many reviews I have just read, I stayed all the time guessing and I could not anticipate on what would be the ending. The story is really interesting and the narration went like in an action movie. It features Jessica Shaw, a private investigator, who is following a complex investigation regarding events she will found that many are related to her past and her family. The characters are all well designed and we finish to like most of them, despite what they did or how they acted in the past. We follow Jessica in Eagle Rock, a small town in LA, where a young and beautiful women was murdered 24 years ago in a way that shocked the community living there. Everybody remember what happened but no one could tell the complete and the real version. It will be the job of Jessica to put altogether the parts of the puzzle to reach the truth. The result will be beyond what she was expecting. The author remarkably succeeded to led the reader to feel the particular atmosphere of a small town: gossips, people know each other, silence regarding on certain events, etc. I have also liked the way she used chapters to recall the past. I highly recommend this book
The_Brown_Bookloft 7 months ago
3.5 stars Summary: Jessica Shaw has been a bit at loose ends since her father passed away two years ago. She does a lot of traveling in her job as a private investigator, but she has been more adrift than usual, wandering from place to place, picking up odd jobs by perusing missing person’s websites on the Internet. While sitting in a diner idly flipping through the most current options, she gets an anonymous email. The sender briefly suggests that this should be her next case and attaches the photograph of a young child. Jessica is shocked. The photo is herself as a toddler. Some rapid research reveals the name of the child to be Alicia Lavelle, who vanished when she was three years old. Her mother, Eleanor Lavelle had been found murdered and one of the main suspects, a man, also vanished. The leads on the case petered out rapidly after the murder and became cold. Jessica heads to Eagle Rock to investigate the murder of Eleanor Lavelle and try to discover the link to her own past. She is also drawn into the recent murder of a college student, Amy Ong, whose death is eerily like that of Eleanor’s, twenty-five years ago. In Eagle Rock, Jessica finds out there is danger in uncovering secrets people are desperate to keep hidden. Comments: I felt Thin Air was a slightly above average entry into the mystery/thriller category. I liked it, but didn’t love it. However, I read this book after three absolutely outstanding novels in similar genres. Sometimes reading order and mood can affect my impressions. That being said, I found the plot line intriguing and unique. Jessica’s background was an integral part of the plot of this first book in the series. It will be interesting to see how that plays out in future installments. Recommended for readers of mysteries, crime fiction and thrillers.
Anonymous 8 months ago
A story that could easily have been taken from the headlines in any major city, a private investigator who specializes in finding missing persons, learns she is an actual missing person! This unique premise takes us into some less than desirable locations while our heroine looks for answers. What she finds only raises more questions. Lisa Gray has done an excellent job of pulling us into the community of characters that populate this story, making us care about them. As soon as I finished this book, I told all my book buddies, you HAVE to read this one!
Clazzer 10 months ago
Lisa Gray surpassed herself with this debut crime novel. Jessica Shaw is a private investigator who must examine her own past in order to solve a murder. Her path crossed with other law enforcement who she discovers are not as transparent as perhaps they should be. Working with detective Jayson Pryce she discovers the past may not be as she first thought. What were the circumstances leading to her mother's murder? What does she not know about her father's past? Broken after her father's death she is struggling to keep afloat. While searching for work, finding missing people, she receives a photograph of a child kidnapped from Los Angeles twenty five years ago. She is stunned to discover that that child is her. So begins her search to uncover the truth. This is an excellent debut novel from Scottish writer Lisa Gray. Hers is a name we will hear a lot more of in the years to come.
dcl55 11 months ago
Thin Air by Lisa Gray is a double mystery until you get closer to the ending. I enjoyed the story and the character of Jessica Shaw. I am looking forward to reading more in this series. The book opens with a brutal murder which is a bit shocking and will hook the reader. Then we meet Jessica Shaw and follow her as she learns some hard and unexpected truths about her life. Could she be the child in the picture which was emailed to her by "John Doe"? Thin Air is a murder mystery spanning two generations which have been affected by one woman, Eleanor Lavelle.
Rag_Doll 11 months ago
Jessica Shaw is a private investigator. She specialises in missing persons and while trawling through online pictures of various missing people wondering which job to take up next, she receives an email with a picture of a three year old with the message 'your next job'. Jessica recognises the little girl as herself, and with a little bit of investigation realises that she was once that missing person. The investigation which she obviously has to take up, makes her feel her whole life was a lie and just has to find out what happened to her murdered mother, who her father is who brought her up, and who her real father is. Someone from the past wants to keep things in the past, and as Jessica faces things head on and uwittingly puts her life in danger. This is a very intriguing storyline – not knowing you're a missing person – and it is cleverly written with a dual story of a very brutal murder of a young student. The two stories seem to be separate, and so many years apart, but all is revealed at the end.
jjthor 11 months ago
Private Investigator Jessica Shaw discovers her mother was murdered the day she was born. while she is actively looking into her own cold case she meets up with a Detective Jason Pryce and together they work on both his and her cases. A very good story well lined out with plenty of twists added to the story as it unfolds. Kept my attention to the end had to see what had really happened.
CuppaWords 11 months ago
Thin Air by Lisa Gray is a mystery/thriller which follows Jessica Shaw, a private investigator, on her journey to unearth the truth of her very own existence. The opening chapter of Shaw’s debut novel thrusts the reader into a unique and intriguing premise. Shaw is forwarded a missing persons photo of a young girl from years ago. A young girl who just so happens to be Shaw herself. In the ensuing chapters, the story vacillates between present day, the past, and another, seemingly unrelated investigation surrounding the murder of a college student. While the plot at its most basic level is captivating, excessive descriptions littering nearly every movement of every scene may prevent readers from becoming fully emerged in the plot. The characters, both primary and secondary, were not exactly flat, but lacked a fullness that made it difficult to become invested in any of them. The book is marketed as a mystery and thriller, but I found the inclusion of the thriller category set me up for failure. A thriller, to me, is an edge of your seat read that hypnotizes the readers chapter after chapter. Aside from the very clever hook at the end of the first chapter, I found the story easy to set aside. The first 30% of the book is a bit of a slow not-quite-burn which requires quite a bit of plodding through unnecessary descriptions, including what shape and size the stones laid in the patio were. With all of this said, I still found myself interested enough to see the story to the end and, for the most part, was satisfied with the conclusion. It may seem that I’ve nitpicked this book to death, but I did so because I truly believe Gray is an extremely talented writer with a tremendous future. The writing, with a little tightening and tweaking could have resulted in an extremely exquisite debut. The book as-is is good, not great, but an excellent effort for a first of what I hope will be many. I have no doubt that her subsequent works will burn much brighter than her first as she hones her craft. *I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
BuddyG More than 1 year ago
I was very pleasantly surprised by this book. Since it was from a first-time author and the title itself was slightly generic-sounding, my guard was a little bit up when I started reading it. However, that changed after just a few pages because I quickly saw what a talented writer Lisa Gray is. I was instantly impressed with her very good descriptions of things. How a building looked, how a character reacted to situations they were in, how mysteries were revealed and unraveled, etc. Author Lisa Gray’s skills as a writer and storyteller made it all very compelling. In fact, I was just a few chapters into the book when I realized that in addition to already becoming a fan of the author, I was also already a fan of the main character, Jessica Shaw. I knew that, unless this book flip-flopped and ended up disappointing me, I was going to be reading the future books in this series with no hesitation at all. But it stayed very good throughout the entire book and my opinion didn’t change. I enjoyed this story a lot. Mystery is my favorite genre and I read quite a few mysteries every year. If you’re a fan of the genre, I highly recommend this book to you. *I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
RICHandNANCY More than 1 year ago
Thin Air by Lisa Gray -- 5 Stars Publisher: Thomas and Mercer ISBN: 9781542093644 Thin Air had all the elements needed to make it a truly outstanding novel. The action begins with the first page and never lets up throughout. The characters are interesting and believable. They take turns telling the story and the exchange between them flows seamlessly. The idea of a young woman who searches for missing persons finding herself a missing person is unique. I did not see the connection between two gruesome murders that were committed twenty five years apart or figure out who the killer was until the amazing surprise ending. Although this is the first book in a series, it wasn’t a cliff hanger to force you to the next book. Thus, it was a very enjoyable, independent novel, baiting you to pursue additional ventures by its characters. I absolutely enjoyed this novel and look forward to reading more of the series. Review: Nancy
Juliapicks1 More than 1 year ago
One day she checks her email, finding one with an attachment of a news photo with a headline. It is an old photo of a 3 year old little girl. Jessica is beside herself as she recognizes that the little girl is her at age 3. But the real issue is that the photo presents two problems: not only is it of her but the photo headline claims the girl has been kidnapped after the brutal death of her Mom, with the date revealing it was 25 years ago. Wow! I am hooked!
72BRUIN More than 1 year ago
Not your typical mystery as the investigator finds out the SHE is the missing person. Tying together a variety of loose ends, the author does a thorough job, but somehow, I felt that I’d read this all before.
paytonpuppy More than 1 year ago
Detective Jason Pryce is investigating the death of a young college student, found in a motel viciously beaten and stabbed. At the same time, private investigator Jessica Shaw, receives an anonymous tip, a picture of a three-year old girl who has been missing for the past twenty-five years. As Jessica looks at the picture, she realizes that she is the girl in the picture. The young girl, Jessica, was abducted the night that her mother was murdered. To get answers, she leaves for Los Angeles to investigate the cold case. As clues unfold, the way both women were murdered seems to connect the two cases. Is it possible that the same person committed both murders? A puzzling mystery that will put Jessica’s life in danger. I received an advance review copy at no cost and without obligation for an honest review. (by paytonpuppy)