Darkening Skies – Bronwyn Parry

For eighteen years, a black hole in Mark Strelitz’s memory has concealed the truth: that he was the driver of a car in which a young woman died. Now he needs to set the record straight. His very public resignation from Parliament forces the reopening of the case that saw his mate Gil charged for the accident.

Not much would drag investigative reporter Jennifer Barrett back to her hometown of Dungirri… except new questions about her cousin’s death. She knows too well the whiff of corruption and cover-up, and she’s determined to find the truth behind Mark’s startling revelations. They had been good friends when they were young. That was long ago and people can change.

Her first stop is Mark’s homestead on the edge of town, but despite the sounds coming from inside, no-one answers the door. Walking around the back of the house, she sees that someone has broken in and a fire is spreading quickly. Who is trying to keep Mark silent and stop the investigation before it even begins?

Other books by Bronwyn Parry : As Darkness Falls, Dark Country, Dead Heat & Dear Ruth (Short Story first published in Woman’s Day)

website : Bronwyn Parry

Review

Wow!!!! What can I say?  I have been following this author since As Darkness Falls came out and yet again Bronwyn Parry has  delivered a completely enthralling book.  I was so excited when I won a copy of Darkening Skies. I was waiting on tender hooks because this author always delivers a fascinating story and if I hadn’t won there was no way I was going to miss out on this book.

As soon as I started reading this book, it was like I had only finished Dead Heat yesterday.  The characters welcome you back as if you had just stepped out of the room for a minute or two. The town of Dungirri stays with you long after you move on and read other books.  But don’t think you need to read the others before reading this book.  They are all based in the same town and the characters sometimes cameo in another book but each book is stand alone.

From the beginning in As Darkness Falls when we first see Mark, I wanted to know more about him. Perhaps it’s because as I’ve gotten older I’ve come to realise what people let you see of them isn’t necessarily who they really are and Mark came across as a really strong secondary character with hidden depths.

With our Federal election just over and all the shenanigans that were involved, for Ms Parry to portray her political character the way she did with Mark is a breath of fresh air.  Here we have a man with strong beliefs of what is right and wrong and who is prepared to stand by those convictions regardless of the personal cost. That when he discovers a wrong, he has to make sure its put right even if to others “what’s past is past”.

Jenn and Mark share a past that should have driven a wedge so completely between them that there should be no coming back from however the author lets each character grow to their own conclusion.   They are in many ways completely opposite but as the book flows you really see why opposites attract in a good way.  They complement each other and as a couple are so much stronger than each one is alone.

This is probably the most fast paced of all the books so far and there really seems to be so many threads to weave you wonder how it all will come together. Right through out the read I was reassessing who I thought the culprit was.  Just when I thought I had it worked out, I’d read something and then I was right back at square one.

I liked Jenn as a character but this book for me was all about Mark.  His strength of purpose, his understanding of himself and his town in touching.  Here is a man who doesn’t push himself forward. He sees what needs to be done and sets out to do it. Simple actions like putting sugar in the coffee for shock. Or listening to harsh messages on his voice mail so he can reply.  Something most of us would just hit delete and pretend it never happened. I remember thinking that in As Darkness Falls, he came across as brash and a bit full of himself but now all I can do is admire him.

If there is one book you have to read this year, let it be this one. Ms Parry is one of the few authors who to coin a phrase from “The Castle” go straight to the pool room.  Her timing and delivery never goes over the top or falls short.  Just when you think there is too much, the thread start to weave themselves together  and you find yourself slowing down.  Not because of the pace of the book but because you know the end is coming and really, you don’t want to leave just yet.  Hey who am I kidding,  I never want to leave.

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About theaussiebookworm

I'm a reader and a book reviewer
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