Evil resides everywhere, but in Meg Gardiner’s new novel, it calls Gideon County, Texas home.
Following her hit novel, UNSUB (2016), Gardiner brings back former California-based narcotics detective Caitlin Hendrix, who is now a rookie FBI agent assigned to the bureau’s elite Behavioral Analysis Unit. After proving to have a knack for tracking killers in California, Caitlin’s new gig allows her to cross state lines and pursue the most dangerous and deranged murderers in the country.
The story opens with an overtired first-time mother waking up to the familiar sound of her ten-month-old baby crying. It’s just after midnight when Shana Kerber rolls out of her bed, notices that her husband, Brandon, still isn’t home yet, and heads for the nursery where little Jaydee is yelling for her late night snack.
To her horror, Shana finds Jaydee’s room empty and follows the crying to the living room, where a stranger is sitting on her couch, holding her crying daughter. They say everyone has a gun in Texas, but it doesn’t mean people carry them throughout the house. Unfortunately for Shana, her 12 gauge is under the bed, leaving her unarmed, tired, too stunned to think clearly, and totally vulnerable. When Brandon arrives home a tick after one in the morning, he finds the front door open and Jaydee crying on the family room floor. His wife is nowhere to be found.
Two days after Shana vanishes, Caitlin is read into the situation brewing in Texas. It turns out that Shana is actually the fifth woman to go missing over the past six months. All of the disappearances have occurred on Saturday nights around similar circumstances. More alarming is the fact that the disappearances are occurring closer together, suggesting that whoever is behind the vanishings is gaining confidence.
After the Gideon County Sheriff’s department asks for the FBI’s help, it’s wheels up for the Behavioral Analysis Unit, led by legendary FBI profiler, Special Agent in Charge C.J. Emmerich. Along with Emmerich and Caitlin is Brianne Rainey, a ten-year veteran of the FBI and a brilliant investigator. Together, the trio starts building a profile of the Texas murderer, who has more than a few things in common with real-life serial killer Ted Bundy.
As Caitlin gets further into the mind of the killer, she finds herself drawn to one man in particular, but catching him proves to be much harder than she originally thought. As a dangerous game of cat and mouse gets underway, Gardiner dials up the suspense on her way to delivering another nail-biting climax that will have readers glued to their reading chairs.
Meg Gardiner is at her best yet again, terrifying readers with another wickedly-good storyline that’s impossible to put down. The author has clearly done her homework, going into great detail to explain the thought process behind a killer’s actions as they prey on their victims. Likewise, Gardiner provides tremendous and interesting insight into how investigators look at everything, even the smallest of details, inside a crime scene for clues as they work to identify traits and characteristics about the killer they’re chasing. It’s all fascinating, and Caitlin–one of the strongest new female protagonists in the genre–is the perfect lead to bring it all to life.
Keep the lights on while you read this one… Meg Gardiner’s Into The Black Nowhere is a gripping crime thriller that will chill you to the bone and leave you begging for more.
Author: Meg Gardiner
Series: UNSUB #2
Pages: 368 (Hardcover)
Release Date: January 30, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 8.0/10
Praised as “one of today’s finest book reviewers” by New York Times bestselling author Gayle Lynds, Ryan Steck has “quickly established himself as the authority on mysteries and thrillers” (Author A.J. Tata). He currently lives in Southwest Michigan with his wife and their six children.