Saturday, October 11, 2014

Review: The River is Dark by Joe Hart

The River is Dark opens to an explosively grim scene involving a child running from a monster. Immediately it's obvious the pace of Joe Hart's novel will move swiftly. Retired Detective Liam Dempsey goes to a Tallston, Minnesota after he receives news that his brother and sister in law have been brutally murdered. Their young son is in the hospital in critical condition fighting for his life.

Liam initially comes off as the damaged detective many characters seem to be nowadays. It almost makes you wonder are there no good detectives out there? Must they all be one drink away from the edge? Eventually, the reasons Liam seems so broken become revealed. I really enjoyed getting to know him as he investigates the murders in this small town. As the evidence piles up, and the clues start leading towards the development of land near the river, the pieces begin to fall into place for who or what is causing the gruesome deaths.

Let me tell you, during the moments of action, Hart spares no expense. He's descriptive, gory, gruesome, and encompassing. I only wish he'd spent a little more time on the characters. Although The River is Dark is a little on the short side, I still think that a little more depth could have been given to these characters. It would have made for better rounded story.

Overall, The River is Dark is a fast moving novel that explores the results of what happens when greed takes over, family secrets are exposed, and the past just won't go away. I really enjoyed reading this novel and would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a quick read with an interesting mystery... oh yeah and monsters...

Copy provided by Thomas & Mercer via Netgalley

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