A Darkness Absolute by Kelley Armstrong
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I'd like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book!
This is a review of an ARC (however the final version of the book has now been released.)
First of all, disclaimer: Kelley Armstrong is my favourite author. I grew up in a town near her, and we all took huge amount of pride in the fact we had a local Canadian author who was just so damn good! That being said, I am also writing my review without having read the first novel in this series. While I've never read a series out of chronological order before, I couldn't manage to get my hands on a copy of the first, and waiting was seriously bringing down my NetGalley review ratio...and lets face it I had a new Kelley Armstrong book on my Kindle. I couldn't wait any longer! However, jumping into the second book, I had nothing to worry about. This read fine as a standalone mystery. Armstrong is very good at giving us characters histories and backgrounds without it coming off as "this is what you missed last time on City of the Lost!"
I found the mystery in the novel to be genuinely interesting. Casey Duncan, our main character and detective, stumbles across a young woman who has been held in a cave for over a year. The rest of the book is piecing together who did it, and whether or not they did it to others before. While at times I felt the plot was meandering around (there was much more talking and thinking different theories through) I think it fit well with the story.
I really loved how character driven this story is! Typically in mysteries we see the investigator solve the case. Cool. However we get a bit of a more realistic approach here, in that life goes on. Not every single sentence is devoted solely to I gotta catch the bad guy, and instead gives our characters little breaks to deal with their everyday lives.
My only critique with this book (which may have been resolved in the final copy), is that it felt a little too long, with the characters never keeping me 100% focused on them or the case. I am planning on going back at a later date and reading the first novel, which hopefully will get me involved with the characters, but as for now they fell a little flat for me.
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