Following on the heels of Alone in the Dark, this latest intense and thrilling installment of the Cincinnati series returns to the dark world of human trafficking, sexual exploitation, and drug dealing with yet more filthy evil for the men and women behind the badge to root out and destroy. A new heroine and hero take center stage in the form of FBI agents, Kate Coppola and Griffin Davenport.
Every Dark Corner is the third book in the Cincinnati series and part of the author’s greater series of dark thriller romantic suspense stories. It works best read in order and ties directly to earlier events and people in Alone in the Dark, but in a pinch it could be read out of order.
The story opens with new to her Cincinnati assignment, FBI Agent Kate Coppola encamped beside the hospital bed of coma patient Agent Griffin Davenport. Kate has an affinity with this man that she barely met on the last assignment that blew his cover, but got the human trafficking ring that he was deep undercover with. Davenport made sure she got CDs of his audio case notes though she can’t consult him after the shooting and the coma that was helping him heel. Kate isn’t sure why she is particularly attached to the man who seemingly had no friends or relations, but his shooting tore open her own past nightmares.
When Griffin awakes from his coma and can communicate the thought that has been most prevalent on his mind, this sets in motion several things including a joint task force of police, FBI, and other professionals to press further into their most recent case for some dangerous heretofore unknown loose ends. A kiddie porn dealer had a partner, a major drug maker and dealer seems to be connected, and a connection to the human trafficking ring that was recently brought down is still in operation and has taken more kids. Griffin is frustrated in how slowly he is healing and unable to help Kate and the others search the clues even while every connection or potential witness is being eliminated by those who do not wish to be found.
The Professor is tying up loose ends that could reveal him even as he learns that one lose end, Griffin Davenport remains out of reach. He will get him and get any others who might come after him. He is brilliant and untouchable. Or so he thinks, but while he plots, a weak and scared young woman dares to hope that she might play a part in taking him down and saving her sister and other kids from having their lives destroyed and left in misery like her own.
So, this is a huge book with many narrative threads that all tie together to form one suspenseful and gripping story. It can intimidate by size and, at first, by the quick scene changes before the reader can get immersed in the story. Then the connection happens and it’s easier to follow all that is taking place.
The author brings together a huge cast of characters that are predominantly the law enforcement types out to stop a crafty and evil criminal, but also includes that criminal as well. Normally, I am not one for getting both sides of the equation because it takes away the tension in the story, but in the case of these books, it works to make it more riveting.
The story begins with isolated events starting things in motion and eventually they tie together. I like how cohesive the book feels even while there is so much that could have been distracting. There are plot threads that work on the immediate case, but then there are personal story threads like Kate and Griffin’s pasts, and also Kate and Griffin’s romance. There is also the victim-survivor’s story and I love that this angle is not overlooked.
Parts police procedural as the investigation goes on, there is also a camaraderie and spirit amongst the investigation team and their surrounding circle of friends that makes for a lot of depth and complexity behind the thriller plot thread. This is needed, too, because the bad stuff in this story is dark and gritty and heartbreaking. As a reader, I was totally cheering on the law enforcement team to bring down the villains and enjoying the return of familiar faces from earlier stories working on the team and making their appearances.
The immediate situation was dealt with, but I saw room for more toward the overall series story that can be told. I love all the main characters and enjoy being along for them to work these desperate cases. From the early moments all the way through the end, I appreciated the book and definitely want more. I think those who enjoy thrillers and also darker romantic suspense would appreciate this book/series the best.
My thanks to Penguin Group for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
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