Fifteen years ago, a young girl by the name of Moonlight Smith
went to the house of her best friend, Nicky Nowak, for a sleepover.
Moonlight joined the family for breakfast the following morning and
was then picked up by her mother. Shortly after, Mr. Nowak went for
He was never seen again.
Autumn has arrived on the mountains above Trafalgar, British
Columbia, Canada, and the promise of winter is in the air.
Constable Molly Smith is cuddled by the fireplace with Adam Tocek
of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police when Tocek and his dog,
Norman, are called to a wilderness camping ground to join the
search for a little boy who sneaked away from his family looking
for bears. The child is found, dirty, terrified, and weeping but
unharmed. Then the inquisitive Norman digs up something else: human
The ID isn't positive, but it is enough to have Sergeant John
Winters of the Trafalgar City Police pulling old boxes from the
basement to reopen the Brian Nowak investigation. He finds a family
shattered beyond recognition by Brian's disappearance. Mrs. Nowak
is an empty shell of a woman, dressed in pajamas, never leaving the
house. Her son, Kyle, haunts the streets of Trafalgar at night and
spends his days creating beautiful but highly troubling art. Nicky
Nowak lives in Vancouver and has grown up to be gorgeous, charming,
elegant. Yet behind that façade lies a woman whose heart has closed
so tightly against human relationships that she comes to Trafalgar
trailing in her wake a terrifying threat to another innocent
As the investigation into the life and disappearance of Brian
Nowak grows, old secrets are brought to light and new ones struggle
to remain hidden.
Among the Departed is more than a mystery novel: it is
also a story of love - love new and old, long-concealed,
life-affirming, and fatal.