☆☆➹⁀☆ 4.5 stars ☆➹⁀☆☆
What It’s About:
A chilling debut thriller in the vein of Dexter and The Talented Mr Ripley.
Martin Reese has a hobby: he digs up murder victims. He buys stolen police files on serial killers, and uses them to find and dig up missing bodies. Calls in the results anonymously, taunting the police for their failure to do their job.Detective Sandra Whittal takes that a little personally. She’s suspicious of the mysterious caller, who she names the Finder. Maybe he’s the one leaving the bodies behind. If not, who’s to say he won’t start soon?
As Whittal begins to zero in on the Finder, Martin makes a shocking discovery. It seems someone—someone lethal—is very unhappy about the bodies he’s been digging up.
Hunted by a cop, hunted by a killer. To escape and keep his family safe, Martin may have to go deeper into the world of murder than he ever imagined.
Guest Reviewer Tom’s Thoughts:
Nathan Ripley delivers nothing short of a a page turning grisly thriller in his first novel Find You in the Dark. Martin Reese is a likable guy with a somewhat checkered past who gets into BIG trouble. We want to be right about Martin, but Ripley seeds us wit | h just enough doubt about his main character’s complete innocence.
As Martin arrogantly pursues justice on his own for the disappearance and likely murder of his sister-in law, he finds he is in over his head. What makes this read so compelling is that Ripley, in detailing Martin’s snowballing predicament, is deftly capable of putting us at the center of Martin’s fear, almost making it our own. As Martin teeters on losing control of his life and loved ones at every turn, Ripley’s delivery has us trying to figure our own way out if we were to somehow find ourselves, through little fault of our own, at the mercy of the dark side of society.
Adding to our enjoyment (and at times our fear and anxiety), Ripley’s character development is exquisite throughout. I particularly liked the well developed side story relationship between detective Whittal and her romantic and professional partner Chris Gabriel. The interplay between the two is refreshingly genuine.
No thriller is complete without a perfectly crafted ending, and author Ripley fantastically delivers the perfect denouement.
On the downside, some dialog transitions from character to character are difficult to follow, and some detailed cross references to earlier chapters had me backtracking too much. While this is at times frustrating, it is a bearable annoyance given the rest of this well written gem.
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