Thank you to Prometheus/Seventh Street Books for providing me with a free copy of The Deep Dark Descending in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Homicide Detective Max Rupert never fully accepted his wife’s death, even when he believed that a reckless hit-and-run driver was to blame. Haunted by memories both beautiful and painful, he is plagued by feelings of unfinished business. When Max learns that, in fact, Jenni was murdered, he must come to terms with this new information—and determine what to do with it.
Struggling to balance his impulses as a vengeful husband with his obligations as a law enforcement officer, Max devotes himself to relentlessly hunting down those responsible. For most of his life, he has thought of himself as a decent man. But now he’s so consumed with anguish and thoughts of retribution that he finds himself on the edge, questioning who he is and what he stands for.
On a frozen lake at the US–Canadian border, he wrestles with decisions that could change his life forever, as his rage threatens to turn him into the kind of person he has spent his entire career bringing to justice.
Wow. Just: wow. The Deep Dark Descending is hands down the best book from Eskens yet. This book is the fourth in a series, and it’s the kind of story that has been simmering in the background for a while now and is finally coming to a head. If you’ve read the other books in the series, then you know that Max never got over his wife’s death and was never satisfied with the investigation that ensued. In this novel, he has decided he’s had enough and starts investigating on his own, using his connections as a Detective to find out what he can. When he discovers that his wife’s death was not an accident, he cannot control his need for revenge.
The first chapter takes place ‘Up North’, and the reader knows that Max has found someone who he thinks is responsible for his wife’s murder. We just don’t know yet what he plans to do with this person he’s tracked down nor who this person is. The alternating chapters tell the journey Max took to find clues, track leads, and finally reach the killer.
More ‘Up North’ chapters are throughout the book, as Max makes a plan with what he is going to do to the killer. But in addition to that suspense, he is visited with memories and flashbacks from his life with Jeni as well as the woman who raised him as a child. These memories give Max pause with his task at hand: what he will do, out in the middle of nowhere, with his wife’s murderer. This added so much emotion to Max’s character and the book. Many crime fiction novels are devoid of much empathy or emotion which is a characteristic that I think sets Allen Eskens apart.
I find that the books I love best end up being the hardest reviews to write and I don’t know if I’ve come close to doing this one justice. The novel is intense, emotional, suspenseful and hard to put down. Allen Eksens is among my favorite authors, I highly encourage you to read his work, you won’t regret it! Five star read!