Charlotte Sawyer’s life was up-ended when her fiancé left her stranded at the altar just five days before the nuptials with an unworn wedding gown, hefty catering bills and an emotional scar to boot. Her therapist urges her to embrace spontaneity, suggesting she take up a new hobby like kayaking, but risk-averse Charlotte opts for mindfulness classes instead.
Cautious, rule-following Charlotte doesn't break out of her comfort zone until circumstances tug her into a spiral of adventure and intrigue. Unable to contact her half-sister, Jocelyn, Charlotte becomes concerned. When a padded envelope with a set of keys and a cryptic note arrives from one of Jocelyn’s friends, Charlotte goes to the woman’s apartment to investigate.
She learns that Jocelyn’s good friend, Louise Flint, is dead, supposedly of a drug overdose. Many questions are raised, and Charlotte becomes even more alarmed about Jocelyn’s disappearance. At Louise’s condo, Charlotte runs into a cool and reserved private investigator, Max Cutler.
Max is newly divorced and just establishing himself in Seattle. Like Charlotte, he carries a lot of baggage. Raised in a commune by his mother and a charismatic leader, he was traumatized as a child by a house fire and his mother’s subsequent death. Despite his tough background, his drive and passion to help others appeals to Charlotte. Although he won’t be paid for his work, Max agrees help Charlotte, and she manages to trust Max enough to join forces with him. As the mysteries of Jocelyn’s disappearance become more puzzling and the dangers mount, the two are drawn to find comfort with each other.
A number of intriguing storylines are cleverly intertwined to make Jayne Ann Krentz's When All the Girls Have Gone a compelling, suspenseful and satisfying read.