Review of A Darkness Absolute

This novel will keep you on your mental toes!

A Darkness Absolute

Rockton #2

Kelley Armstrong

November 14, 2017

Minotaur Books

Blurb: When experienced homicide detective Casey Duncan first moved to the secret town of Rockton, she expected a safe haven for people like her, people running from their past misdeeds and past lives. She knew living in Rockton meant living off-the-grid completely: no cell phones, no Internet, no mail, very little electricity, and no way of getting in or out without the town council’s approval. What she didn’t expect is that Rockton comes with its own set of secrets and dangers.

Now, in A Darkness Absolute, Casey and her fellow Rockton sheriff’s deputy Will chase a cabin-fevered resident into the woods, where they are stranded in a blizzard. Taking shelter in a cave, they discover a former resident who’s been held captive for over a year. When the bodies of two other women turn up, Casey and her colleagues must find out if it’s an outsider behind the killings or if the answer is more complicated than that…before another victim goes missing.

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A Darkness Absolute by Kelley Armstrong is a mystery/thriller that will keep you guessing every step of the way and won’t even let the tension ease when you discover who-dun-it. The second installment in the Rockton/Casey Duncan series incorporates atmosphere and foreboding from its dark secluded location in the Yukon.

Rockton is a town where people who have the means or a special talent can go to get off the grid, some because death is hunting for them, others for other reasons. Casey was a homicide detective who killed a man with mafia ties. When they found her, she fled to Rockton where she became Rockton’s detective.

In this latest thriller, Casey and Anders discover a woman who had been being held captive in a cave for a year. Now they have to figure out who was capable of that. Was it someone from Rockton? An outside settler? One of the hostiles?

While Armstrong is primarily known for her paranormal books, this Rockton series shows her range as a writer. She keeps the reading engrossed and guessing, page-turning, second guessing. Even when we do know who the perpetrator was she doesn’t let the tension slide away. It’s a reader roller coaster ride, and I love it.

If you’re a fan of dark mystery/thrillers with a strong female detective and realistic characters, give this series a try.

This came from the desperately needs-to-be-sorted library of Sascha Darlington.



5 out of 5 butterflies

13 thoughts on “Review of A Darkness Absolute

  1. I read the first one in this series and had some really mixed emotions about it. Probably because I’d had certain expectations (wasn’t really aware this wasn’t a typical KA book), but it was enough, I’ve not been able to pick up this second one. I may have to see if I feel any differently about this second one than I did the first.

    1. I have to say that each of her series is very different. I’ve not ventured far into her werewolf one after Bitten, but I read through her YA paranormal, her Nadia Stafford, and am working through this one. While you and I seem to read similarly, I think we have very different takes on what we read. I’d love to know what your issues were with the first.

      1. Okay, I went and looked… apparently I didn’t actually write a review, which makes sense as I wasn’t really sure what I thought of it. I don’t think I disliked it exactly, but I kept expecting the town to hide some sort of paranormal secret and that never happened. This was on me as it isn’t tagged as anything fantasy or paranormal, so no fault of the author or the book as far as that goes.

        I think that part of why I struggled was that this was such an unusual setting and circumstances surrounding that setting that I struggled with having much of it make sense without that paranormal element (again, my expectations). I wonder if I were to go back and reread it without having those expectations, if I would not have such mixed emotions. The premise is intriguing, though I think I would still have a lot of issues with believability.

      2. (Sent w/o finishing Ugh.) Anyway, I kept expecting supernatural elements and none appeared.
        Before reading the first Rockton book, I read the Nadia Stafford series, which I loved, about a female hit…person. No supernatural, so I wasn’t surprised with Rockton.

      3. I had only read her other books up to that point. I still haven’t picked up any of the Nadia Stafford books. I might have to put the first one on my TBR soon to see what I think.

      4. Her YA books were pretty good from what I remember. They were paranormal. And, I’ve only read Bitten from her first series. I guess I’ve missed her Cainsville series.

      5. I read the YA books (some of the only ones I’ve ever read and liked in YA), all of the Otherworld and Cainsville books. I really liked the Otherworld books, but they seemed to be sort of clustered by characters and I enjoyed certain character clusters better than others. I LOVED the first couple of Cainsville books, but really wasn’t a fan of the last few and seriously disliked how the series ended (though part of that has to do with the whole dislike of the love triangle trope).

        If I were to look at the whole body of work that I’ve read, I normally really like KA books, but there tends to be some misses in there for me as well.

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