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Rise the Dark


Rise the Dark

Rise the dark.

This cryptic phrase marked the final written words of Lauren Novak before she was found murdered. These words continue to haunt and eat away at her private investigator husband, Markus. Following the murder in an eerie Florida village, Markus has made it his personal mission to track down and bring to justice the person responsible for this brutal killing --- a man named Garland Webb.

Meanwhile, in the town of Red Lodge, Montana, a series of violent acts have terrorized this snowy, mountain locale. Jay Baldwin is a high-voltage wire linesman and is responding to acts of vandalism and destruction that temporarily sunk the community into darkness. During this dark period, his wife Sabrina was abducted. The name of the man who kidnapped her was Garland Webb.

"...a thriller of the highest caliber that will dare readers to put it down before reaching the exciting climax."

Michael Koryta immediately ties his two narratives together, and readers will be held in a state of nail-biting terror as each successive page brings you closer to the inevitable collision between all of these characters. Markus and Jay have been deeply affected by the loss of their wives. The former is grieving his late wife, while the latter is helpless to save his.

Behind all of these acts is a demented individual who is the puppet-master behind Webb and a slew of other like-minded acolytes. The real villain is Eli Pate. He started off innocently with a pacifist agenda in retaliation of things that threatened the earth --- fracking, oil drilling, corrupt big businesses, pollution, etc. What started off as innocent, with Pate heading a legion of people who supported his aggressive and determined agenda, has quickly turned criminal, and the ultimate plan he now has in mind will rock the very foundations of the entire country.

Sabrina is being held hostage as leverage for Pate and his minions to blackmail Jay into utilizing his electrical skills to help them achieve a stunning act of violence against the U.S.  This feels very much like home-grown terrorism that is intensified when members of the group --- like Webb --- are seen having contact with Islamic terrorist groups. There is far more at stake than the revenge Markus has in mind or the rescue and safe return of Jay's wife.

Markus enlists the aide of a female FBI officer, along with his uncle, in this battle. They eventually all converge on Pate's land for the anticipated showdown. One message Koryta maintains throughout the novel is that the lines between good and evil are often blurred, and it is not always the righteous and good who reign supreme. No one will return from this skirmish untainted.

Michael Koryta has done a fine job with RISE THE DARK as he presents his most suspenseful novel since the terrific THOSE WHO WISH ME DEAD. At times his writing has toed the line between suspense and the supernatural. This is a thriller of the highest caliber that will dare readers to put it down before reaching the exciting climax.

Reviewed by Ray Palen on August 19, 2016

Rise the Dark
by Michael Koryta

  • Publication Date: July 25, 2017
  • Genres: Fiction, Suspense, Thriller
  • Mass Market Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • ISBN-10: 0316510025
  • ISBN-13: 9780316510028