Ten years ago Trumanell Branson disappeared.
Her brother, Wyatt, lives as a pariah cleared of any involvement but tried and sentenced in the court of public opinion.
So when he finds a lost girl he believes she is a sign, someone to lead him to his sister and finally clear his name.
Instead she leads him to young police officer Odette Tucker. She knows they must tread carefully – the town still waiting for its missing girl to come home, is a tinderbox and this new arrival might just set it alight.
We Are All the Same in the Dark is a high concept, thrilling and creepy read packed with atmosphere and tension – with a fiendishly clever twist.
A dark novel set in Texas and told from three different perspectives, told chronologically, the book opens with Wyatt, finding the mysterious girl. Odette takes over and then we finally hear from the girl herself. But this is about a small town grappling with death and loss. Wyatt’s sister disappeared 10 years ago, she is presumed dead, Wyatt lives as an outcast, the towns folk believe he did it and they are watching, never forgetting. Odette is close to the case but she doesn’t believe Wyatt did it, some believe this is her Archilles heel and that her judgement is warped.
This was a compelling, slow burn of a novel, the writing is original and while it took some getting used to, quickly I was absorbed in the story. Written in the first person throughout, the writing is tense as the disappearance of Trumanell Branson continues to be explored, no one is certain what happened to her, and a shadow remains over Wyatt, who is marked by what occurred and uncomfortable to be around.
The chapters are short, urging the reader to read on and the location plays a part, a place where young girls may not be safe but also the landscape is brutal and the climate can be deadly. The remote locations seep into the story and a tornado, while vicious may be the least risky component at play. Small town vibes aplenty, Odette’s father oversaw the original investigation and Odette was involved, but what did she see?
I was very impressed with the writing and particularly with how the story concluded – neatly. I would definitely recommend this book and while I would suggest it would have a wide appeal, you should certainly pick this book up if you enjoyed Valentine by Elizabeth Wetmore read my review here, or perhaps Bonfire by Krysten Ritter – reviewed here.
About the Author
Julia Heaberlin is an award winning journalist who has worked for the Fort Worth Star – Telegram, The Detroit News and The Dallas Morning News. She has edited numerous real life thriller stories, including a series on the perplexing and tragic murders of girls buried in the Mexican desert and another on domestic violence. She lives with her husband and son in the Dallas / Fort Worth area, where she is a freelance writer and novelist. Black Eyed Susans was a Sunday Times top five bestseller.
This was a blog tour – huge thanks to Ella at Michael Joseph for inviting me to be involved and providing me with a proof copy to read. This is the last day of the blog tour – but you can still read what others thought of this great novel by checking the #WeAreAllTheSameInTheDark.