By Joe Hart
Publisher: Amazon Publishing
Publication Date: 10/14/2014
My Rating: 5 Stars
In a small town along the Mississippi River, separate but nearly identical attacks have left two married couples brutally murdered in their homes. A young boy—the lone survivor of the killings—now lies comatose in the hospital. And the police’s only lead is the boy’s terrified description of the assailant: a “monster.”
Enter former homicide detective Liam Dempsey, whose estranged brother fell victim to the killer. Dragged into the investigation as a suspect, Dempsey vows to solve the case and clear his name. But two things stand between him and the truth: a web of local politics, and the grim secrets the victims held close. All the while, a murderer with boundless hatred continues to raise the body count.
As the troubled ex-cop tries to pull justice from the town’s emotional wreckage, he realizes that his could be the next life lost to the killer’s ruthless, twisted plan for revenge.
A special thank you to Amazon Publishing, Thomas Mercer, and Netgalley for for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
The River Is Dark by Joe Hart, is a thriller of revenge, a dark ruthless twisted murderer, mixed with chilling horror and intense suspense; a lovable former haunted homicide detective Liam Dempsey, returns to a small town along the banks of the Mississippi River, for a page turner mystery, you will not be able to put down!
Liam Dempsey, has issues of his own in Minnesota, and receives a call of his estranged brother and sister-in-law’s brutal murder in Tallston. Upon arrival, he finds a double murder in the same week; and the other couple murdered, was his physician brother’s best friend and the godfather of the boy, who escaped the monster’s grasp by losing his arm and is currently in a coma— the lone survivor of the killings. The police’s only lead is the boy’s terrified description of the assailant, a “monster.”
Liam sets out to find the connection, and learns of a powerful company, Colton, Inc. (the town, future home of Colton, Inc. where industry meets nature, LIES) with a web of local politics, greed, and conspiracy, with hidden mysterious secrets of the victims, yet to uncover.
In the meantime, a woman (Dani, a friend of his sister-in-law), he has not seen since his brother’s wedding, is back in town as the two work closely to find the identity of the killer. Who and what lies on the other side of the river? Motive?
More people on the city council are targets, and the murders are somehow related to the upcoming vote of the river property. All the while, the evil murderer, continues to raise the body count. As the troubled ex-cop tries to pull justice from the town’s emotional wreckage, he realizes that his could be the next life lost to the killer’s ruthless, twisted plan for revenge.
Wow, my first book by Hart, and cannot wait to read more! An intriguing gripping fast-paced thriller, pulling you in from the front cover to the dynamic ending!
I fell in love with character, Liam Dempsey—reminding me a little of favorites: J. Carson Black’s (Cyril Landry), Michael Connelly’s (Mickey Haller), Greg Iles' (Penn Cage), and Karin Slaughter’s (Will Trent). Each of them with a haunting past, always on the edge of life and death-good and evil; however, you find yourself rooting for each of them, as beneath the rough exterior, a heart of gold.
Fans of suspense and horror thrillers with devour—just in time for Halloween! Would love a sequel based on Liam Dempsey, as he is too good to end. I am sure there are more secrets in this family’s past which are yet to be uncovered (Allen, the dad, Susie, Dani, Eric, possibly Nut) for more thrills to come!