Title: Dark Waters
Author: Mary-Jane Riley
Genre: Mystery
Publisher: Harper Collins/Killer Reads
Source: eARC via NetGalley
Length: 332 pages
Available: 16 March 2018

“Afterwards, Alex Devil would associate the music of Wagner with the time her relatively settled life began to slip from her control.”
— loc. 113

darkwatersTwo seemingly unconnected men are found dead on a boat in a quiet vacation spot, the seaside town of Sole Bay is rocked. Journalists flock in but a local freelance writer, Alex Devlin has the edge: she’s one of the first of the media to arrive after hearing about the deaths on the radio. As national and local papers quickly lose interest in the story, despite one of the dead being a famous magazine owner, Alex’s “journalistic instincts” tells her there’s more to the story.

But the deaths aren’t the only thing Alex is trying to figure out. Heath, a flirty reporter from The Post, agrees to help her figure out the story but is then suddenly put on a new desk. Then disappears completely. Lin, Alex’s best friend in Sole Bay, keeps turning up at strange times. Not to mention, Alex is trying to juggle being there for her mother as she cares for Alex’s father and his early on-set dementia and getting her house ready for visits from her son and her sister. Everything else falls by the wayside when Alex begins to find clues that link the two men, however.

“Alex hurried down the road to her house, so intent on getting back that she failed to see the shadowy figure following her every step.”
— loc. 1623

No one wants Alex to work this story, especially the closer to the truth she gets. Once she starts piecing the story together, Alex isn’t even sure she wants to know the whole truth–especially when it starts bringing her closer to home. Not being able to outrun the past is a theme heavily portrayed in Dark Waters. Part mystery, part domestic thriller, Mary-Jane Riley weaves together a multi-layered tale that spans generations. A light, quick read for fans of shows like ‘Broadchurch’.


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