Published by Berkley Books on December 3, 2019
“Everyone has hidden corners of their life, even the people we think we know inside out.”
FINAL DECISION: A thriller/suspense story about the secrets that rest in small towns where everyone thinks they know everyone but where there are dangerous secrets. I found this book compelling and it kept me turning page after page wanting to see the secrets being revealed.
THE STORY: Anahera Rawiri returns to her hometown in New Zealand. A hometown that she is reluctant to return to and yet is drawn back. There are dark secrets in this town and even more secrets among the people who live there. Will Gallagher is the new cop in town who was sent there after an incident in Christchurch. It was a way of putting him on ice. The town of Golden Cove seemingly is a dead end job without any need for Will’s detective skills until a young woman disappears. Then the dark secrets of the town begin to be revealed.
OPINION: Nicely centered in the community relationships and characters (which is an area that Singh excels in her romances), the story kept me guessing throughout. As varying stories are slowly revealed, there is no doubt that everyone is deeper than what is known at the outset. Nicely, that is also true of the two main characters in the story. As readers, we know some of the pasts of these characters, but their story is slowly unwound even as the mystery unfolds as well.
Although not overly creepy, there is something unsettling about the town and its surroundings. The overwhelming feeling that everyone has secrets and some of those secrets are dangerous makes this book compelling.
I liked both Anahera and Will. Both out of sync with the town…Will an outsider and Anahera a local who has spent a decade away and thus straddles the line between being a part of the town and being a stranger. This gives them a nice connection as they are the “outsiders” doing the investigation while both have one foot in the town.
I enjoyed this story because I kept changing my mind about what was going on and how it was connected with the past. I kept reading page after page because I wanted to know more about Will and Anahera — not just the mystery. That nice balance made this a really good read.
WORTH MENTIONING: This is not a romance. Please don’t read it looking for a Singh romance and then complain that it isn’t a romance. It is also not a paranormal, fantasy or sci-fi book. The book does have romantic elements, but romance is definitely not the focus here. There is sex but it is pretty much all off screen.
CONNECTED BOOKS: A MADNESS OF SUNSHINE is a standalone.
STAR RATING: I give this book 4.5 stars.
NOTE: I received an ARC of this book via Netgalley. I was not required to write a review or to write a positive review. All opinions contained herein are my own.