Rating: 4 ♥’s
Published: January 11, 2021
Genres: Mystery, Thriller, Adult
Pages: 339

Detective Amanda Steele stops just inside the doorway, recognizing the victim’s face instantly. He seems so vulnerable in death; soft, human, even harmless. But she can never forget the evil he has inflicted. Her heart is hammering as she remembers her precious daughter, with her red curls and infectious laugh, and how she was lowered into that little grave…
It’s been five years since Detective Amanda Steele’s life was derailed in the path of an oncoming drunk driver. The small community of Dumfries, Virginia, may have moved on from the tragic deaths of her husband and daughter, but Amanda cannot. When the driver who killed her family is found murdered in a motel room, she can’t keep away from the case.
Fighting her sergeant to be allowed to work an investigation with such a personal connection to her, Amanda is in a race to prove that she can uncover the truth. But the more she digs into the past of the man who destroyed her future, the more shocking discoveries she makes. And when Amanda finds the link between a silver bracelet in his possession and the brutal unsolved murder of a young exotic dancer, she realizes she’s caught up in something darker than she ever imagined and suspects that more girls could be in danger.
But as Amanda edges toward the truth, she gets closer to a secret as personal as it is deadly. Amanda has stumbled upon a dangerous killer, and she must face some terrible truths in order to catch this killer – and save his next victim as she couldn’t save her own daughter…

I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley/The Publisher in exchange for an honest review.

When I got an email saying that there was a new Carolyn Arnold book coming out, and a start to a new series no less, I was thrilled to get the opportunity to read it. I have read some of her others and have enjoyed them. I thought this book was a good start to the series and I am definitely looking forward to the next one when it comes out.

You really get to look into how Amanda is feeling and handling the death of her husband and daughter, and how it is affecting her at work. Take on top of that the man who took them from her is released from prison and she has to solve his murder. I really liked that you get to see how she is struggling, but then she starts finding herself again and is starting to heal from what happened before and get on with her life. There are some supporting characters in this, but the main focus is Amanda. However, I really liked that she is starting to open up to her partner Trent and hope that we see more of them together as the series goes on (possibly maybe even a romance…just saying).

The plot I thought was well done. The story flowed smoothly and it really kept me on my feet. I would think I had something figured out and then nope not quite. I sure was not expecting the ending! That was a good twist that was thrown in there. It will be interesting to see if that plays out anymore in the next book. I also feel like maybe I know from part of the ending that we might see Amanda continuing down the journey of what she found on the bracelet (not going to say because it gives away part of the surprise). The writing was well done and easy to follow. I did want Amanda to just tell her boss the reason why her alibi was taking so long, but I have a feeling we are going to see more of this alibi in the next one.

I definitely am looking forward to seeing where the series goes from here.

Book Challenges:

  • Around the Year in 52 Books #45 – Related to a codeword from the NATO Phonetic Alphabet
  • 52 Books in 52 Weeks #23 – An ending that surprises you
  • Popsugar #36 – Has fewer than 1,000 reviews on Amazon or Goodreads
  • Magic in the Books #11 – Mystery novel
  • Linz Bookworm #14 – A murder mystery
  • A-Z Title – L &  A-Z Author – C
  • Booklist Queen #52 – A 2021 new release
  • The Nerd Daily #49 – Start a new series
  • Wizarding World Tour #7 – Where a character breaks the law
  • Calendar of Crime – January
  • Pick Your Poison #2 – About overcoming obstacles
  • Mount TBR, Virtual Mount TBR, Cloak & Dagger, & Netgalley/Edelweiss
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