**I have been given a copy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.**
TITLE: The Missing Teacher
AUTHOR: Jeremy E. Owen
PUB. DATE: October 12, 2016
WHERE TO BUY: Amazon
FORMAT: E-ARC (EPUB)
The Missing Teacher: When senior high student Declan Cullen happens upon a silver USB in his recently missing ethic teacher’s classroom, he discovers that the small town of Hillside cannot escape the consequences of treason half a world away. Can Declan and his best friend, Claire Browning, reverse the effects of international intrigue? More than one life will depend on it. (Credit: Goodreads)
Review: There were some critiques that I caught, but I still enjoyed the book.
To start off, the writing was very direct, which isn’t necessarily something to look down upon. In a way, it kind of work out well for this book in particular, because a lot of things would’ve ended up being a bit more confusing if there was a lot of indirect narration, so at times, I was grateful for it. It kept this up throughout the rest of the story, and I got used to it, so I came to like it a bit more when things tended to be less up front with the way the story was going.
However, applying it to the characterization, I wished that more things would have been hinted, so that the maybe we can interpret them a little more for ourselves. I still liked that a lot of details about the characters were mentioned to us, but I felt as though too little was given, and it broke the flow of being direct. If the characters were subtly described and given more background (like flashbacks, etc.) then it probably would’ve made them stand out a bit more, because we are working out their character personalities for ourselves.
That doesn’t mean I didn’t understand the characters though! 😀 Declan’s personality was a bit all over the place; sometimes he seemed like a flat character, while other times I could picture him as either a very well-rounded kid, with a curiosity for mysteries. But from a respective standpoint, I concluded that he was a student who likes looking out for others.
Claire’s character had less of a build-up. She was there most of the time to either support Declan, or just give him a hand with his sleuthing. We know her background pretty well, but she was reduced to a side character that didn’t really have a big influence on the story.
There were a bit of loose ends as well. I don’t really think I can mention the big ones, this being a spoiler-free review. Still, I’d like to supply you with an example. There was the mention of Claire’s father being someone of importance, but it was left alone soon after it was mentioned. Maybe it’s an error on my end, and I just missed it, but there was nothing further about this, which led me to fantasize what kind of higher authority her father was. The ending was also a type of cliff-hanger, but I hear that the second book may tie that out, so I’ll have to wait and see. 🙂
The plot felt as though it contained a lot of fillers at some parts. These are mostly the transitions of time or just the jokes (which a couple were well timed in my opinion, so props). I understood a lot of the time transitions, you have to show that the rest of the day has past after all. And for some areas, I think they were used pretty well, but for others they may not have been needed. Instead, putting those three dots (those ones that represent time-lapses) would have done the same thing. Especially when changing the point of views, it would show a nice clean break of one character’s scene, and moving on to another’s. (Gotta get that good dramatic irony going on. 😉)
I feel like I’m just critiquing and not even mentioning the pros. This book still had quite a few things that I liked and appreciated, and so I’ll mention them in this next section.
I was genuinely happy about the premise and the focus of this book. I’m all for mysteries, so I liked all the undercover work that Declan was doing. The story was mainly centered on getting Mrs. Craig back, now that I’m thinking, but there’s some subplots in there as well.
There was a hint of a romance going on. I’m sure a lot of readers felt that too. But it was just a small little dose. However, one party involved never actually revealed anything about their feelings to the other person, and that other person was also too dense to notice anything anyway. But in a way, I was kind of happy for this. It showed that the bits of romance was not the main story, and that we should direct our attention to the other events that were occurring.
Still, a small side of me just wished that I could ship someone, even if it was fleeting. 😄
Mrs. Monroe was probably one of the worst teachers I’ve ever met. But that was basically the whole point of her being there. I think she may have been involved with some kind of plot twist in the beginning (I kind of got that vibe after chapter seven) but was changed into a Mrs. Craig antithesis for the rest of the story. She didn’t necessarily have a function after that, other than being a really rude teacher. This is a really odd compliment, but I was kind of happy she was there, y’know, for me to dislike. I kind of enjoyed, from that point, how she was made out to be this really annoying teacher. It’s really strange why I’m happy to have a character to dislike, but I am.
Overall, this book was still enjoyable. I had some things that I had to critique or had conflicting opinions about, but it was still enjoyable to read.
More: Thank you so much for reading! If you liked this review, please hit that Like and/or Follow button. Go check out the author right now with the links I’ve given you above! There are two books in this series out right now, so be sure to check them both out! Thank you again, and I’ll swing back here again later!