Saturday, February 25, 2023

A Cry in the Dark

A Cry in the Dark by Jessica R. Patch
2/28/23; 368 pages

A Cry in the Dark by Jessica R. Patch is a very highly recommended mystery/thriller. This is an excellent novel!

FBI special agent Violet Rainwater is a forensic psychologist and an agent with the Strange Crimes Unit, Southern Division. She is called to the Appalachian Mountain town of Night Holler in Kentucky to investigate the murder of three young women whose bodies were found in a cave. Their deaths are obviously due to a serial killer, especially considering the gruesome detail that they are all missing their eyes and their eyelids were sown shut. Detective John Orlando joins the team to assist because he thinks the case might be related to the murder of his wife several years earlier.

Violet is a sympathetic and fully realized character. She had a tragic childhood due to the appalling circumstances that led to her mother giving birth to her. Her mother has never allowed her to forget why she was born and has treated her terribly her whole life. Once Violet was in a position to find her contemptible father, who abducted her mother when she was fifteen, she started trying to find him along with half-siblings. She has suffered her whole life, never feeling loved or wanted.

The writing is absolutely excellent in the plot, execution, and development. The case is completely compelling and the narrative will hold your attention throughout. As the investigation unfolds and new clues are uncovered, there are several suspects that will come to the forefront. Follow the clues and expect plenty of twists along with new information. There is an ominous, creepy atmosphere throughout the novel, but there is also a wonderful corresponding spiritual message of personal redemption, surrender, healing, and love.

The first book in this series following the Strange Crimes Unit is Her Darkest Secret that follows agents Fiona Kelly and Asa Kodiak. You don't have to read it first, but you will absolutely want to read it after reading A Cry in the Dark.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Harlequin via Edelweiss.

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