One of Us
by Tawni O'Dell
My rating: 4 stars
Publication Date: August 19, 2014
Publisher: Gallery Books
Genre: Adult Fiction
Print Length: 304 pages
Available from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Dr. Sheridan Doyle, a
fastidiously groomed and TV-friendly forensic psychologist, is the go-to
shrink for the Philadelphia District Attorney's office whenever a
twisted killer's mind eludes other experts. But beneath his Armani
pinstripes, he's still Danny Doyle, the awkward, terrified, bullied boy
from a blue-collar mining family, plagued by panic attacks and haunted
by the tragic death of his little sister and mental unraveling of his
mother years ago.
Returning to a hometown grappling with its own
ghosts, Danny finds a dead body at the infamous Lost Creek gallows where
a band of rebellious Irish miners was once executed. Strangely, the
body is connected to the wealthy family responsible for the miners'
deaths. Teaming up with veteran detective Rafe, a father-like figure
from his youth, Danny, in pursuit of a killer, comes dangerously close
to startling truths about his family, his past, and himself.
One of Us by Tawni O'Dell
My Rating: 4 Stars
From its front cover to its last page, prepare for an atmosphere that is full of dark secrets in a town that is breathing its death rattle. One of Us by Tawni O’Dell, a character driven plot filled with layer upon layer of history will leave its reader slightly unsettled as we are led through a maze of greed, deceit and haunting pain that began decades before. Like a barbed vine, the past has grown tendrils that continue to pierce the hearts, minds and lives of those caught in its twisted snare.
Lost Creek is a worn out mining town, where there were two classes, the wealthy Dawes family who made their fortune on the backs of the poverty-stricken miners. Having run from Lost Creek and its nightmares, years before, a successful and famous psychologist reluctantly returns when he is told his remaining family needs him. As old memories resurface and Dr. Sheridan Doyle becomes immersed in both past and present entanglements, he is sucked back into the vortex of the drama that persists and the bad blood between the Doyles and the powerful Dawes family.
Scarlet Dawes, the rich darling of the Dawes family has also returned, but her agenda is far more sinister as she strives to protect the unspeakable crimes committed that allowed her the luxuries she has always known. She is a mystery, unsettling and challenging to Danny (Sheridan) Doyle as he observes her skewed version of life. What Danny didn’t count on was how closely entwined their lives were or how twisted and mentally deranged the beautiful Scarlett was.
Told from the POVs of Danny and Scarlett, this bone-chilling tale is slowly peeled back to reveal a rot that has destroyed the minds and lives of this small-minded town.
Ms. O’Dell paints a grim picture of life in an impoverished town and how it has been affected throughout the years. Don’t expect many shining moments in this dark tale, but DO expect to find yourself engrossed in the brilliant style of this author.
I received an ARC edition from Gallery Books in exchange for my honest review.