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News and Reviews

Reviews for





(Missing Pieces: a novel of the Balkans was a semi-finalist

for the 2019 Booklife Prize for fiction)


"Missing Pieces: a novel of the Balkans by Thomas De Angelo has a well-developed, well-thought out plot played out in a setting with which most Americans will be unfamiliar. The author's research and expertise on the topic is admirable. Some readers may find the premise that an alcoholic anthropologist was given an assignment so dangerous to be a stretch, however, the novel's exciting pace will keep readers invested.


The author is a gifted writer, with a clear talent for rendering action sequences, dialogue, and description. The story unfolds at a steady pace, holding the reader's interest, and the author's storytelling abilities are top-notch. He does a superb job creating a unique scenario in a creative and captivating way. The central characters to the story are finely developed and generally distinct. The reader sees the progression in the main character, Gloria Wren, as she deals with her struggles, and her motivations remain clear."



"Missing Pieces by Thomas De Angelo will draw you in immediately. The novel is set in the Balkans of 1998 where the repercussions of the Balkans War are still being felt. The protagonist, Gloria Wren, is flawed and not the typical hero you find in this type of novel, but her vulnerability works so well. An anthropologist, she is preparing to assist her investigative journalist fiancé by going undercover at the Croatian Red Cross to investigate thefts of medical supplies.

When David is suddenly found dead,Gloria believes he was murdered. Her investigations uncover much more than she ever imagined; not only stolen medicines but a terrorist network responsible for the ethnic cleansing of people during the Bosnian War. As Gloria battles her own personal demons she soon becomes the hunted.

There is an interesting mix of characters. The plot is superbly created, with many twists and turns that keep you guessing who can be trusted as any of the characters could be implicated in David's murder.

Missing Pieces takes the reader on a rollercoaster of suspense and tension that keeps you completely engaged until the explosive end. The references to historical events and the background to the genocide of Muslims and Croats during the Bosnian conflict were so interesting. The references also to places and architecture made the storyline even more realistic and believable. This novel is a fantastic tribute to those unsung, and often innocent,victims of war. As Gloria concludes: 'Throughout history, people in upheaval have clung to their values in order to give a reality to their lives. Here in the Balkans, even their values have been trodden on'." - Lesley Jones, book reviewer, for READERS' FAVORITE REVIEW





click on book cover to read a review by the Historical Novel Society of Between the Sword and the Wall