#BookReview: We Are All the Same in the Dark by Julia Heaberlin @PenguinUKBooks #WeAreAlltheSameintheDark #damppebbles

“Back then, the police cleared her brother Wyatt of any crime. But now a TV documentary has judged otherwise. And old suspicions are reignited.

Yet when Wyatt finds a lost girl wandering a lonely highway, he convinces himself she’s a sign. Someone to lead him to his sister. To clear his name.

Watching him is police officer Odette Tucker. She’s got history with the Branson family. And she knows they must tread carefully.

Odette is determined to solve both cases, but will digging into this town’s deeply buried secrets do more harm than good?

And what will happen when the shocking truth is finally exposed?

We Are All the Same in the Dark is the nail-biting thriller from the Sunday Times bestselling author, perfect for anyone obsessed with HBO’s Mare of Easttown.”

Hello and welcome to damppebbles. Today I am delighted to share my review of We Are All the Same in the Dark by Julia Heaberlin. We Are All the Same in the Dark was published by Penguin Books in paperback format on Thursday 2nd September 2021 and is also available in hardcover, audio and digital formats. I chose to read and review a free ARC of We Are All the Same in the Dark but that has in no way influenced my review. My grateful thanks to Gaby at Penguin Books for sending me a proof copy.

I read and reviewed Black-Eyed Susans by Julia Heaberlin shortly after starting damppebbles back in 2016. It was one of my early reviews but I remember the book quite clearly, because it absolutely blew me away! Despite there being over five years between then and now, Black-eyed Susans has stayed with me to this day. So my heart soared when a copy of We Are All the Same in the Dark arrived. I couldn’t wait to get stuck in!

Trumanell Branson, the town’s sweetheart, disappeared with her father one night ten years ago leaving behind a bloody handprint on the door. To this day, no one knows what happened to Trumanell (nor Frank). But Odette Tucker, girlfriend of Trumanell’s brother at the time, and now local police officer, has never forgotten that night and is determined to discover the truth. She’s certain Wyatt, Trumanell’s brother, had nothing to do with the disappearance despite the rest of the town, her police colleagues and a true crime documentary all believing otherwise. When Wyatt discovers a lost girl in a field, he feels it’s a sign but Odette isn’t so sure. Now with two tricky mysteries to solve, Odette starts to dig into the town’s past and discovers a lot more than she ever bargained for….

We Are All the Same in the Dark is a beautifully written, slow-burn mystery which I found truly captivating. For me this book was all about the characters and in particular Odette, who I adored. Her tenacity and commitment to Trumanell’s disappearance was very engaging and I was with her every step of the way. With the introduction of a second more current mystery, ensuring Wyatt wasn’t ruffling feathers, her failing marriage and her own family history hanging over her, Odette has a heck of a lot on her plate. There’s one scene in particular where she goes above and beyond for another character and it was not only fascinating but it pulled on this dark-hearted reader’s heartstrings. I loved Odette Tucker!

The plot is well paced with some surprising twists along the way to throw the reader off kilter, many of which I didn’t see coming, which is always a joy. One in particular was a bit of a sucker punch which left me reeling in its wake. Marvellous stuff! Although the pace of the novel is on the slow side, the tension is still very much present from start to finish. I felt I had to know what had happened to Trumanell. I had to know where the young girl had come from and what had caused her trauma.

Would I recommend this book? I would, yes. We Are All the Same in the Dark is an intelligently written psychological crime novel which I was more than happy to lose myself in. I really enjoyed spending time with the characters, I loved the small town feel, the pressing claustrophobia the book emanates and I was swept away by the cleverly constructed mystery. Heaberlin is a very talented writer and remains high on my ‘must read’ list.  Immersive, compelling and heart-breaking in parts. Recommended.

I chose to read and review a free ARC of We Are All the Same in the Dark. The above review is my own unbiased opinion.

We Are All the Same in the Dark by Julia Heaberlin was published by Penguin Books on 2nd September 2021 and is available in hardcover, paperback, audio and digital formats (please note, the following links are affiliate links which means I receive a small percentage of the purchase price at no extra cost to you): | amazon.co.uk | Waterstones | FoylesBook Depository | bookshop.orgGoodreads | damppebbles bookshop.org shop |

Julia HeaberlinJulia Heaberlin is the internationally bestselling writer of BLACK-EYED SUSANS and PAPER GHOSTS, a finalist for Best Hardcover Novel by the International Thriller Writers Awards. Her latest psychological thriller, WE ARE ALL THE SAME IN THE DARK, has received a starred review from Publishers Weekly, which described her work as “exceptional.”

All of her books, including PLAYING DEAD and LIE STILL, are set in the moody, diverse landscape of Texas and together they have been published in more than twenty countries.

Before writing novels, Heaberlin was an award-winning editor at newspapers that include the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, The Detroit News and The Dallas Morning News. BLACK-EYED SUSANS, a USA TODAY and a top-of-the-charts Times of London bestseller, has been optioned for television by Sony Pictures. Currently at work on her sixth thriller, Heaberlin lives in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. She is published by Penguin Random House and represented by Kimberly Witherspoon at Inkwell Management.

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