Darkness on the Edge of Town [NOOK Book]

Overview

“A superb debut…Welcome to a strong new voice in American Crime Fiction”
—T. Jefferson Parker, author of THE BORDER LORDS

Laura Cardinal: Packs a SIG Sauer P226 9mm. Investigates homicides in small towns that have limited resources. Brings justice to murder victims—and to their killers. Laura’s job description: Criminal Investigator with the Arizona Department of Public Safety. But maybe it should just say “Troubleshooter.”

Used to be kids ...
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Darkness on the Edge of Town

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Overview

“A superb debut…Welcome to a strong new voice in American Crime Fiction”
—T. Jefferson Parker, author of THE BORDER LORDS

Laura Cardinal: Packs a SIG Sauer P226 9mm. Investigates homicides in small towns that have limited resources. Brings justice to murder victims—and to their killers. Laura’s job description: Criminal Investigator with the Arizona Department of Public Safety. But maybe it should just say “Troubleshooter.”

Used to be kids played outdoors until time for dinner, now social media’s the new game in town. These days, they play on their smartphones. But with more freedom comes greater danger. Mobile devices are a conduit into a child’s life, not just for friends but for those who intend harm. This is the message of J. Carson Black’s Daphne du Maurier Award-nominated thriller, DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN.

When Laura investigates the murder of a fourteen-year-old girl found in a town’s park bandshell, she knows immediately what she’s up against: a cunning sexual predator. But why is she plagued by the abduction of a schoolmate eighteen years earlier?

In a runaway case that propels Laura from a lavish Tucson estate to the secretive heart of a north Florida town, she must confront the ghosts of her own past. Then another child goes missing—and Laura must race the clock to find her.

“A complex, multi-layered, nail-biting Superthriller”
—Michael Prescott, author of MORTAL PURSUIT
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Editorial Reviews

Romance Reviews Today - Jane Bowers
Call it a thriller, mystery, or police procedural, DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN is made up in equal parts of riveting suspense and in-depth characterization, and is a haunting read by any name. I highly recommend this intriguing debut novel.
New Mystery Reader - Stephanie Padilla
This stunning mystery debut has everything the aficionado requires; fast-paced plotting, realism and well-researched detail, suspenseful red-herrings and, most importantly, a heroine who is fascinating and completely human.  We eagerly await the next outing featuring this most engaging character and are delighted to hear that this highly qualified author is already at work on the next.
Chicago Tribune - Dick Adler
J. Carson Black is a . . . genre treasure. Like Michael Prescott, Black can make you believe she's the first person ever to use the material she does.
SF Site - Lisa DuMond
There ought to be a law that novels should not be this well-plotted, assured, and addictive. It just ain't right. I don't know if it's the complex, compelling characters, the vivid, out-of-the-way settings, or the constant tension J. Carson Black weaves into Darkness on the Edge of Town, but once you started reading you'll move faster and faster, with no way to stop until the breathtaking ending. Forget sleep, because you won't have time for such trivialities; you're here to read.
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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940013409514
  • Publisher: Breakaway Media
  • Publication date: 9/21/2011
  • Series: Laura Cardinal Series , #1
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 29,523
  • File size: 1,020 KB

Meet the Author

J. Carson Black is the bestselling author of the three crime novels in the Laura Cardinal series: DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN, DARK SIDE OF THE MOON, and THE DEVIL'S HOUR, and the suspense novel, THE DESERT WAITS.

A man driving an old car tried to abduct her as a child, following her through an empty Tucson neighborhood. Her friend's mother, who happened to be outside, scared the driver away. Black remembered exactly what the car looked like--a 1955 Chevrolet sedan, orange over white. The sedan makes an appearance in DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN, although the victim in the story isn't so lucky.

A Tucson, Arizona native, Black writes about the New West.

Visit J. Carson Black at jcarsonblack.com
Fan the Facebook page at facebook.com/JCArsonBlack.authorpage
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 64 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(29)

4 Star

(22)

3 Star

(9)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(1)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 64 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    dark brilliantly plotted police procedural

    In Bisbee, Arizona, teen Jessica Parker was abducted near her home and killed. The perpetrator dressed in a little girl¿s outfit was posed in City Park¿s band shell. Needing help, the police chief asks the Arizona Department of Public-Safety to send an investigator. When Laura Cardinal starts investigating, she is shocked that the girl looks like her childhood friend who was also abducted and killed. Laura finds a matchbook cover with the name Crazygirl12 is on it.--- Laura thinks that Jessica met her killer over the internet even though local officer Buddy Hudson believes it was a local man. Two twelve years old girls are raped and killed by a perpetrator using the sane MO as Jessica¿s murderer. A tip sends Laura to a small Florida town where she finds out the identity of the sexual killer. When Buddy¿s daughter is abducted, Laura rushes back to Bisbee; he thinks the same perpetrator took his child. Besides the kidnapper, a sexual sadist who tortures, rapes, and kills young girls has plans for the girl and is always one step ahead of the police almost as if he has inside information.--- DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN is a dark brilliantly plotted police procedural that is told mostly in the third person. The author uses the first person to hone in on the perpetrator¿s thoughts and feelings so that readers will feel a great antipathy towards him. This is J. Cooper Black¿s debut novel and it reminiscent of the works of Boris Starling and Michael Slade who show the audience the darkest side of human monsters with the skill to make people afraid that their next day neighbor could be such a person.--- Harriet Klausner

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 25, 2011

    Well written dark thriller

    I found this book hard to put down; well written characters, twists in the plots that were well conceived and not blatant or written for convenience. It has a dark story line, but the characters are all strong and realistic. I was truly surprised more than once, without feeling like I had be purposly led astray. I highly recommend this book. I have already ordered the next in the series.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2011

    Great!

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2012

    Wonderful and familar scenery

    Good cop mystery, easy to visulize as I live in Tucson AZ

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 10, 2011

    okay

    It was a good story addressing a current problem inolving teens and computers....but it was long and too drawn out.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 27, 2011

    Excellent

    This book was well written -- suspenseful, and the characters were real and interesting. Will definitely read more from this author.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 26, 2011

    good read!

    Mr. Black is a good writer, very descriptive! I enjoyed this book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 26, 2011

    A WINNER!

    "A bad one's coming...watch your back, Kiddo," said Frank X. Entwistle at three in the morning in the bedroom of Laura Cardinal. Frank was Laura's old mentor and he was dead.

    So begins the gripping tale of DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN. Frank's warning alludes to a criminal case involving the death of a fourteen-year-old girl. The location of the body, the way it is dressed and posed, suggests she just might be the victim of a serial killer, an internet sexual predator, to be exact. The discovery of a dead boyfriend near the initial crime scene tells Laura the killer is bold and will stop at nothing to get what he desires.

    Laura is a DPS criminal investigator and the lead investigator on the case (a female in a man's world of testosterone and politics). In this rustic town of Bisbee, Arizona, Laura finds herself pitted against an envious female law enforcement officer and her boss, a man who follows his own investigation. Laura consults with a wealthy quadriplegic super-hacker, and through a quick course in Internet Sexual Predator 101, she follows a lead across the country to a sleepy town on the Florida panhandle. And from that point on there is no turning back. The ending, with its final twist, will shock and amaze you.

    Atmosphere is so strong in her writing that you'll feel as though you're planted smack dab in the dry sweltering heat of the desert, or the pressing humidity of the swampy seacoast--descriptions filled with the gracefulness of Spanish Moss and the spikiness of a prickly pear. She propels us through gritty, visceral elements of murder and forensics intermingled with a softer side, the tender emotions and fears of a woman who is not as tough on the inside as she tries to appear to those around her. Much of the appeal for Laura Cardinal centers on the contradictions of her character. On the job she is tough and efficient. In her personal life she is less sure of her position regarding love, a tortured past, and her ability to cope emotionally when she learns the case has deeper and more personal connections. Laura is haunted by the abduction and death of a schoolmate eighteen years ago. She could have been that girl. The past is now.

    Beguiling names like: Cooger and Dark's Pandemonium Shadows Show (an homage to Ray Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes); Musicman; and Dark Moondancer, merely hint at the evil darkness that swirls around the places and players Black has created in this wonderful, many layered debut novel. Although JC Black can complete with the best of them in the police procedural novel, she has her very own style, a style that stands out from the pack. If this novel doesn't make the New York Times bestseller list, I will be immensely surprised.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 28, 2011

    Good Book

    I liked this book. It was suspenseful and had good story lines. I plan to read the other books in the series.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 2, 2004

    Don't Miss This One!

    DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN. The title speaks volumes. A gripping tale about the investigation into the death of a fourteen-year-old girl. The location of the body, the way it is dressed and posed, suggests she just might be the victim of a serial killer, an internet sexual predator, to be exact. The discovery of a dead boyfriend near the initial crime scene tells Laura the killer is bold and will stop at nothing to get what he desires. Laura Cardinal is a DPS criminal investigator and the lead investigator on the case (a female in a man¿s world of testosterone and politics). In this rustic town of Bisbee, Arizona, Laura finds herself pitted against an envious female law enforcement officer and her boss, a man who follows his own investigation. Laura consults with a wealthy quadriplegic super-hacker, and through a quick course in Internet Sexual Predator 101, she follows a lead across the country to a sleepy town on the Florida panhandle. And from that point on there is no turning back. The ending, with its final twist, will shock and amaze you. Atmosphere is so strong in her writing that you¿ll feel as though you¿re planted smack dab in the dry sweltering heat of the desert, or the pressing humidity of the swampy seacoast. She propels us through gritty, visceral elements of murder and forensics. Much of the appeal for Laura Cardinal centers on the contradictions of her character. On the job she is tough and efficient. In her personal life she is less sure of her position regarding love, a tortured past, and her ability to cope emotionally when she learns the case has deeper and more personal connections. Laura is haunted by the abduction and death of a schoolmate eighteen years ago. She could have been that girl. The past is now. Evil darkness swirls around the places and players Black has created in this wonderful, many layered debut novel. Although JC Black can complete with the best of them in the police procedural novel, she has her very own style, a style that stands out from the pack. If this novel doesn¿t make the New York Times bestseller list, I will be immensely surprised.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2014

    An interesting and yet disturbing reading experience.

    This is a book that grabs your interest right from the beginning. This story takes you on a trip to the dark side of police work. From Tucson area of Arizona to the Florida panhandle and back to Arizona, parading through nearly twenty years of of brutal ugly deaths of young preteen age girls. It is a story tightly plotted and written. It kept me guessing right to the very end.

    J M Lydon

    J MLydon

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2014

    Great read.

    Good author. Good storyline.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2014

    good book

    Easy n quick to read, held my interest til the end.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2012

    okay

    The book started well, the middle seemed like it was never ending and the end was fast moving. I rated 3 stars for the beginning and the ending. The middle was TOO long.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 10, 2012

    Found me a new author!

    I had never heard of this author, but my friend called to tell me that my town (Apalachicola) was featured in this book. I ordered it so that I could see how true it was. It is obvious that the author visited the town before she wrote about it. The characters where ficticious, but the places were not. I was a little disappointed that the book wasn't totally based in Apalachicola, but was mostly in the Southwest. However, the mystery definitely kept my interest and I did not figure it out until I was almost to the end. I will read more books by J. Carson Black - I love mysteries that feature females.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2012

    new fave

    enjoyed the author

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 3, 2012

    Awesome Read

    Well done. I have most defenitely found a new favorite author. Well written. Had me from the first page. Much suspense, twists and turns. What a suprise ending. Just great, quick reading. And a steal - 99 cents each for all three and long too. I think she might write under another name??? Anyone know? Anyway - WOW!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 1, 2012

    Darkness at the Edge of Town

    Full of twists and turns! Could not put this book down.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2012

    Starts Slowly...

    ...but picks up steam! The author is very good with scene descriptions! Very good cop drama with some great twists! Recommended and would like to read other books by the author.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2011

    Pretty freakin good

    Good read, kinda long but it never got boring. Great characters. I will be reading more by this author for sure

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