Synopsis According to Kirkus Reviews:
My Take: Stellar?? Unguessable? Kirkus must have been asleep at the wheel when reading this one. This is a slightly less than average effort by Rendell. It's pretty obvious "whodunnit" and the investigation is way more meandering than necessary. Other than providing the hysterical mother of the missing kids something be hysterical about (Oh, no! The floods! The kids have drowned....I just know it!) there's no point to the whole flood story in the book. The hysterical mother could have been just as hysterical without the rising river...and maybe the plot would have been a bit more on point. And, honestly, I get a little tired of the "repressive religious" people who so often get thrown in as suspects whether they actually did it or not. (Did they? I'm not telling.) The rendering of Joanna's character is interesting--not a standard female type. And Rendell's writing itself is still very good at this stage--I just wish the story had been a little more straight-forward--more true red-herring sidelines and less flooding and family drama for the Wexfords (will Wexford's daughters ever have a happy life?) would go a long way. ★★ and 3/4.
[Finished on 7/22/18]