Title: The Dark Divide
Author: D. K. Stone
Publication: April 10th 2018 by Stonehouse Publishing
Format: Finished Copy
Source: Provided by the Author
Waterton is a town with dark secrets, and after a summer of murder and mayhem, American ex-pat, Rich Evans, knows exactly how far people will go to hide them. Jobless after the fiery destruction of the hotel he once managed, Rich is charged with arson. Only one person, local mechanic Louise “Lou” Newman, believes in his innocence. But even Lou’s love and support can’t dispel the darkness that’s spreading through the community. Dead animals appear on porches, strangers threaten the safety of the locals, and a fingerprint from the fire is linked to a decades-old murder.
The lonely border town has a new danger: a murderer willing to do anything to protect a web of secrets that links them to the arson.
As the risk of jail or death increases, Rich turns to Lou for guidance and she finds herself in an impossible position. Lou has her own secrets! Does she protect the border town where she grew up, or side with the man she loves… even if it means she can never tell him the truth about herself?
I received a finished copy of this book from Danika Stone for The Dark Divide Online Book Tour. By no means have my review been affected and/or influenced.
The Dark Divide is the sequel to Edge of Wild which unravels more and even darker secrets of the secluded town of Waterton. So guess who’s in for that ride. Me!
It has been a while since I’ve entered the world of Waterton and this time, the suspense is even more intense. The mystery that continues to unravels will get you invested in this series.
The immensely detailed world building in this book is so remarkable, that reading it is more that just imagining what is happening with Rich and Lou, it’s as if I’m actually in Waterton and the “eerie feel” that it gives off is the perfect mood setter. I love how the sequel tells us more about the town and it’s people, though not everything is told; the creepy town-creepy people vibe is just ever present right from Edge of Wild to The Dark Divide.
It’s not only the vivid narrative that is praise-worthy but also the characters in this book. Lou is someone that I liked right from book one but I started to get more attached to her in this one. The inclusion of her abilities in the whole flow of the story is what I’m always looking forward every chapter. I can’t say the same for Rich but the relationship between them and how it’s developing could also be something I’ll be anticipating but right now, I’m on full thriller mode.
I can’t wait for the 3rd installment but for now, I highly recommend you read The Dark Divide. And if you also haven’t read Edge of Wild yet, you’re already missing out, so go, read away and isolate yourself in Waterton!
The Dark Divide
by D.K. Stone
Prologue: Ohio, 1970
The first hint of danger was a howl so distant, it was more a feeling than a sound.
Catherine’s laughter faded uncertainly. She looked up from the firelight to focus on the screen of trees that separated the knot of students from the regal red-brick bulk of Muskingum College.
“Did you hear something?” she asked.
The boy next to her lowered his harmonica. “What?”
“I… I’m not sure. A dog, maybe?”
Around the fire, conversations hushed as the jovial atmosphere of the protest changed between one breath and the next. Catherine’s gaze moved around the clearing. She took in her college friends—young men and women gathered around a fire the way they’d done any number of times since the start of the school year—and then returned to the screen of trees. Between the branches, she could see the lights of her dorm, the college a twinkling gem in the setting of New Concord. She gnawed the edge of her thumbnail. She shouldn’t be out here. Not really. If she walked back now, perhaps she could slip past the police patrol and get back to—
A howl broke the air.
“Police dogs!” someone shouted. “They’re coming for us!”
The group rose, abandoning the bonfire. Catherine struggled to follow, but her left foot had fallen asleep in the hours since they’d been in the woods. She took two uncertain steps and looked back across the flames. The woods between the college and her were no longer empty. Dots of light moved through the trees.
“Cath! Come on!”
Heart pounding, she forced herself into motion. Her leaden foot had cost Catherine time and with no firelight to guide her, she stumbled into the darkened forest, hands outstretched like a sleep-walker.
Up ragged slopes and down shallow valleys, the silhouettes of her friends disappeared into shadow, leaving her alone on the slope. Never an athlete, her speed was half theirs. A dog barked—closer now—and Catherine glanced back again. Flashlights bounced in the trees.
She rushed up the next hill. “Hold on!” she panted. “I’m coming!”
A lone figure paused at the top. “You need to hurry!”
An officer’s voice on the megaphone echoed from the distant campus: “…the use of deadly force permitted for those resisting arrest…” Catherine had seen the videos on television: Armed troops, the bodies of protesters in the street. She knew what those orders meant. Panicked, she half-fell, half-ran down the nearest slope, then started up the next. A terrified voice chattered in the back of her mind: They shot students at Kent State!
Branches tore her hair and slashed her face. She reached the top and squinted into the darkness. All but one of her friends was gone.
Catherine caught hold of a tree trunk. “W-wait!” she gasped. “I-I can’t—I can’t keep up with you!” Behind her, a dog barked. She spun. “No!” Her ankle twisted and she screamed and fell to her knees. A bouncing flashlight switched direction at the sound.
Crying, she threw herself back into motion. She couldn’t see the officer yet, but she could hear him.
“Hurry, Cath! RUN!”
She ran and fell. Ran again. Unable to catch her breath, her vision swam. “I-I’m coming,” she choked. “I—I—”
Frantic barking broke her concentration. The dogs had picked up her scent! Winded, Catherine lost her footing. Her ankle twisted a second time and she tumbled down the hill, the world turning end over end as her screams echoed through the glade.
She hit the bottom with a thud.
“You okay?” a voice called, impossibly far away.
She tried to answer, but her lip was split and her mouth full of blood. Twigs bit through the palms of her hands. Confused, she clambered to her feet and wavered in place. She took two more unsteady steps.Was this the hill she’d fallen down? Or the next? She couldn’t seem to catch her breath. Couldn’t see where she was supposed to go.
“Cath, hold on! I’m coming to help you. Just wait and—”
A beam of light swung across her face.
“STOP!” a voice bellowed from the shadows.
Terrified, Catherine bolted.
The valley exploded with thunder. The sound threw her backward as a white firebrand of pain tore through her chest and back. Catherine tried to scream, but her voice was gone. She slumped to the ground. The pain separated her from the night, the darkness, and the figure of the man who strode forward, his flashlight bouncing between the trees. Her legs kicked one last time as the police officer reached her side.
“Jesus Christ,” he breathed. “She’s just a kid.”
In the forest behind him, a shadow moved.
Book description and cover image from Goodreads