In 2018, the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary executed Operation Wormwood, an investigation into a mysterious disease that targeted some of the worst criminals this province has ever seen.
At the same time, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police were executing Operation Vanished, a special task force whose duty was to solve the historical murders of women and children.
RCMP Corporal Gail McNaughton has just transferred into the Major Crime Unit. As its newest investigator, she is given a stack of missing and murder files dating back to the 1950s. These crimes prove to be a challenge to investigate: most of the witnesses have died or aged, memories have faded, scenes were not secured to today’s standards, and DNA testing was not available at the time. Corporal McNaughton befriends Larry Morgan, an expert on Newfoundland and Labrador history who is also the son of one of the murdered women. Together they put together a list of suspects and begin to dig up ghosts from the past. McNaughton discovers that the files may be linked, and she sets out to prove her theory that a serial killer had been operating in rural Newfoundland when these crimes were committed.
Praise for Helen C. Escott
“Operation Vanished is the epitome of what an author can achieve with the knowledge and skill to back up their work. Expertly plotted and perfectly executed, Operation Vanished is the missing-persons thriller to end all missing-persons thrillers and a massive achievement for author Helen Escott.” — Matthew LeDrew, author of Cinders
“Operation Wormwood is one heck of a thriller.” — The Telegram
Helen C. Escott’s first novel, Operation Wormwood, was a top five finalist for the 2019 Arthur Ellis Awards, Best First Crime Novel, by the Crime Writers of Canada.