Tuesday, August 25, 2020

No Woods So Dark as These

No Woods So Dark as These by Randall Silvis
Sourcebooks: 8/4/20
review copy; 448 pages

No Woods So Dark as These by Randall Silvis is a very highly recommended procedural and the fourth book in the Ryan DeMarco Series.

Ryan DeMarco, former Sergeant with the Pennsylvania State Police, and Jayme Matson, a former State Trooper, have earned a break. The two have decided to take time off to recover from the horror and devastation of their last case, including the loss of their unborn child. Their goal is for a peaceful life while they both recover mentally and emotionally. That goal is shattered when Ryan's old boss Capt. Kyle Bowen requests their help in the investigation of a horrendous crime scene. Two bodies are burned beyond recognition in a car while nearby a man is impaled with rebar to a tree. The leads take them into the world of a drug dealer. While they are helping to uncover clues and track down the main suspect, there is information a former colleague is trying to hint at that must be figured out and their old nemesis Daksh Khatri is clearly targeting both of them.

No Woods So Dark as These is absolutely riveting and held my rapt attention from beginning to end. The characters are well-developed and portrayed as very complex, humane, intelligent individuals. I loved everything about them. They are both in a pensive, reflective mood in the novel and are trying to leave the darkness of all their previous investigations and life experiences behind while looking for a peaceful existence and healing. They are both good people who have been conscripted into another investigation full of horror, lies, scheming, fear, and subterfuge. It will warm the hearts of dog lovers everywhere when they adopt a puppy and set about naming him. Not only does it lighten the darkness, it is endearing.

The plot is very well paced and the short chapters keep the narrative moving, making the investigation, clues, and action easy to follow. The story can be dark due to the nature of the case they are following as well as the people and the clues. This is a case that requires the careful, watchful experience of seasoned investigators who are used to uncovering clues and facts that people are desperate to keep hidden. The ending is a jaw-dropping, heart-stopping moment.

The four books in the Ryan DeMarco Mystery Series are: Two Days Gone (Book 1); Walking the Bones (Book 2); A Long Way Down (Book 3); and No Woods So Dark as These (Book 4). You can read this final book as a stand-alone, but, after lamenting your poor choices in life, you will want to immediately go back and read the first three leading up to the fourth.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Sourcebooks via Netgalley.

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