In the Dark – Chris Patchell

(Reviewed by Ishita RC)

What does a single mom,  a fifteen year old teenager and a diabetic college student have in common? A past that has decided to hold them captive.

If only teenage angst and a horrible boss were the only things that Marissa Rooney had to worry about. While one daughter is being a typical teenager, her oldest child Brooke, goes missing. And this is worrying her more because Brooke is diabetic and doesn’t have her medicine with her.

I love cliff-hanging psychological thrillers. The adrenaline rush that you get out of reading a good thriller is extremely addictive. In the Dark lives up to its chosen name and cover image. The plot line involves the reader from the start of the novel and will ensure that you do not put the book down until the complete mystery has been unraveled. The genre of the book is justified by the excellent use of dark and mysterious imageries. The element of darkness has been given a metaphorical and literal dimension which definitely adds on to the narrative of the book and enriches the novel. The characters justified the story of the book completely and I didn’t find them lacking in any order.

The author has used a simple style of writing with simple and yet graphic description of the background so as to contribute to the element of thrill and mystery. The tone of narration and style of writing complemented each other well and made the whole experience of reading this book quite enjoyable.

Only one negative: The romance between the lead character Marissa, with the lead detective Seth, is underdeveloped which left me somewhat unsatisfied in middle of this good thriller. I am not asking for sleazy encounters of passion. But the spark of romance can be explored further.

I would still recommend In the Dark for those who enjoy psychological reads because of their fascination with human behavior. The book delivers on all aspects – cover page, title, excellent use of imagery and symbolism,  story-line, plot development and characters with whom you can connect.

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