Arizona Department of Public Safety detective Laura Cardinal discovers disturbing parallels between the murder of a young girl and a crime that happened many years ago. A deadly sexual predator is one the loose, and Cardinal soon finds that her investigation is taking an increasingly personal turn.
The first book in J. Carson Black’s Laura Cardinal series,Darkness on the Edge of Town is a very strong thriller focused on a well-written and well-constructed central mystery. The scenes in which the human cost of the killer’s actions are demonstrated are particularly strong, and this is a book with quite a few moments of real emotional power, at least after a slightly slow start to the narrative.
The real star is Cardinal, who holds up well as a convincing and engaging protagonist. There’s clearly potential here for a whole series of thrillers starring the character. There are plenty of plot twists in this character-driven thriller, and even seasoned veterans of the genre are likely to struggle to predict exactly how things will pan out.
Star rating for Darkness on the Edge of Town: 4 stars.
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