I don't know what took me so long before I finally read a John Hart book. I knew he had a solid rep, had won an Edgar, was a popular writer. Maybe I thought he'd be too slow, or too literary, maybe too serious in plot and themes - but he was not. Anyway, I finally did it; read "Down River" and thoroughly enjoyed it. I will soon be reading more John Hart. This book has a a rather basic plot - our protagonist Adam returns home after being away for a number of years, and not everybody greets him with open arms and hearts. We gradually learn what happened, and why many think he was guilty of a serious crime when he left. Upon his return, his family is still one of the richest in the area; his dad owns a huge farm, and a power company wants it to built a nuclear plant since it abuts a big enough river to support a nuclear facility. An outcome that would enrich the lives of all - some looking forward to enrichment in their pockets, others fear enrichment of uranium. Then there's the family. Where to start....perhaps the stepmother who five years ago in court accused Adam of murdering her daughter's boyfriend. And the step-brother who is deeply in debt to the wrong people. And that's for starters. There are also two attractive, passionate young women with strong feelings for Adam even though he has not been in touch with either since leaving. But we must eliminate one them from the chase because......And then there's a couple of murders. Guess who's the primary suspect?
A great, twisty story well told with a very satisfactory ending. Laid out very well such that you don't have to have detail upon detail in the last 50 pages to explain all the connections that tie everything together - a sign of a very good, practiced author. Kudos, John Hart.
I don't always agree with the Richard & Judy recommendations, but this time I am with them all the way. This book is a really classy thriller, with a plot that is complex and beguiling without being too convoluted ... Whenever I thought that I had unravelled the plot, another twist left me flummoxed, and the solution had me blinking with surprise and admiration - Matthew Lewin, Guardian[Hart] explores betrayal and forgiveness in indelible prose - ObserverHart spins a clever mystery and keeps skilful control of his plot - Sunday TelegraphHart builds the suspense of this whodunit expertly - Douglas Wight, News of the WorldA Chandleresque thriller - Sunday TimesA heart-pounding thriller that explores the dark side of human nature - MetroA gripping thriller full of twists and turns - Oldham Evening ChronicleHart proves here he is certainly no one-hit wonder - Good Book Guide
Banished for a murder he didn’t commit – now he’s coming home.