Series: Cincinnati #4
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Crime, Romance, Suspense
Publication Date: November 26, 2019 by Berkley Books
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Source: Publisher via Netgalley
Michael Rowland is not your typical teenager. Deaf from birth, he’s always looked out for his five-year-old brother, Joshua. When his stepfather comes after Joshua, Michael takes the child and runs. He’s determined to protect his brother at all costs, even if that means making himself vulnerable to a danger he can’t hear coming. And the danger intensifies when Michael witnesses a stranger kill his stepfather.
Desperate and afraid, the boys have nowhere else to go but to Joshua’s soccer coach, journalist and ex-Army ranger Diesel Kennedy. When Diesel sees that Michael is injured, he takes them to see Dr. Dani Novak—not only because she’s fluent in American Sign Language, but because he’s drawn to her and everything she stands for. She never refuses Diesel’s requests—because she, too, feels their connection—but she resists him for reasons she doesn’t want to confess.
When Dani and Diesel learn that Michael saw the face of his stepfather’s killer, they fear for his safety. But they quickly discover that it’s even worse than they feared: They may have a serial killer on their hands—and all signs point to Michael as the next target.
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
I read Karen Rose’s Say You’re Sorry last year, and was so excited when I requested and was approved for her 2019 release! Into the Dark follows many characters as they work to catch a serial killer that may be going after a teenage boy next. Before I get further into the review, I do want to give trigger warnings for discussions on human trafficking, violence, pedophilia, discussions about rape and child abuse, child pornography, and verbal and emotional abuse because of a positive HIV status.
There was a lot going on in this almost 600 page book. I was worried it was going to be too much to remember or keep straight, especially with so many different point of views, but it wasn’t. This book also had a lot of diversity that I’ve never read about before. It’s own voices for Waardenburg Syndrome (read the introduction because it gives more information), has multiple characters that are hearing impaired, and the heroine is HIV+.
This is the fourth book in a series, so there are allusions to things that happened in previous books, and a lot of characters from previous books show up, but it was easy to get into the story even though I didn’t know some of the backstory. I did have to put this book down for about a week or so halfway through because it was a very heavy read. It’s so good and done so well, but since it tackled a lot of heavy material I needed to take a break from it. Once I picked it back up though, I couldn’t put it down because I needed to know what would happen next.
I really loved all the characters in this book. Michael and Josh the two kids who are now in Dr. Novak’s care, are so vulnerable and have experienced so much. It made me sad to read about what the kids went through, but loved seeing them become part of Dani and Diesel’s family. I also really loved seeing Dani and Diesel’s relationship progress throughout the book. From the beginning it’s clear that there’s something between them, and even mentioned that Diesel has tried to initiate a relationship with Dani in the past (I assume this is part of a storyline in a previous book). I loved seeing both characters learn to be vulnerable with each other and learn to open up and trust in themselves and in the other person. I loved Diesel, he was so kind and gentle with Dani, and really just wanted the best for her and wanted to be there and help her. Not only was the romantic relationship great, but I love the found family aspect as well. The family didn’t just include the two boys and Dani and Diesel, but a whole group of their friends as well who help them so much throughout the book.
Overall I’m so glad I was able to read this book, and can’t wait to go back and read the first few books in this series!