Book Review

THE FAMILIAR DARK by Amy Engel (Out Today!)

I received a complimentary galley of THE FAMILIAR DARK by Amy Engel for an honest review. Thank you to Dutton Books and Netgalley!

Publication Date: 3/31/2020

Rating: 4/ 5

THE FAMILIAR DARK begins with the murder of two twelve year old girls, Junie and Izzy in a derelict park in a very poor area of the Missouri Ozarks. Junie’s single mother Eve is broken by grief at the news. She has no trust in local law enforcement, so she vows to find and destroy the person who killed her daughter. Eve lives in a dark world filled with poverty, drug abuse and people scrambling to make ends meet through whatever means are necessary.

I really enjoyed this book and it kept me hooked over the weekend, diving into Eve’s world. This was a very dark read, beginning of course with the murder of two young girls. It also delves into drug abuse, child abuse and domestic abuse. This is one that you do want to go into prepared.

I thought that the author really made a strong portrayal of Eve’s grief. Eve came out of a single parent family where her mother was anything but nurturing. When Eve has a baby very early in life she makes a decision to give her daughter all the love that she never had. Though they still live in poverty, Eve works hard so that her daughter will never go hungry. In spite of everything she has done, Eve feels that losing Junie was almost inevitable. The grief and the guilt she feels both come through so strongly.

This is a novel full of complicated characters and scenarios and the author managed to throw in some twists that I did not see coming. If you enjoy a good, dark murder mystery, this is one that you will want on your TBR!

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