i received a copy of black river from allen and unwin nz in exchange for an honest review.
black river review
black river is a riveting crime/mystery novel set in sydney. it follows two main characters: adam bowman, a journalist, and rose riley, a detective on a task force searching for a serial killer. black river shows the unlikely relationship between these two individuals as they uncover secrets and bring a murderer to justice.
the opening for black river is very strong, and well written. i was hooked from page one. the red herrings littered throughout aided in the intensity of the writing. i struggled to put the book down at times.
i really loved the sydney back drop that matthew spencer used for black river. it was clearly a location he had visited on numerous occasions (or even lived there). it gave the story more believability.
of our two main characters, i really enjoyed reading about riley’s experiences. she was a relatable character, and she was damn good at her job. bowman had me feeling many different things. sometimes, i liked him and was intrigued about his mysterious past. other times i was suspecting him. i couldn’t bring myself to fully trust him.
the middle of the book seemed to drag – i struggled to get past this bit. it got rather boring and felt like nothing was really happening. (then, of course, everything starts happening and i was glad i persevered.)
the ending concluded everything in a neat little bow. i wasn’t dissatisfied in any way.
all in all, i think black river is a very well written mystery from an aussie author. he’s someone i will keep an eye out for in regards to his future work.