Dark Roads by Chevy Stevens

Published: August 3, 2021

St. Martin’s Press

I received a copy of this book for free, and I leave my review voluntarily.

Chevy Stevens lives on Vancouver Island with her husband and daughter. When she’s not working on her next book, she’s hiking with her two dogs on her favorite mountain trails and spending time with her family. Chevy’s current obsessions are vintage airstreams, Hollywood memoirs, all things mid-century modern, and stand-up comedians–not necessarily in that order.

“Gone without a trace.”

Hailey is trying to process the sudden loss of her beloved father as she tries to settle into loving with her somewhat estranged aunt and her aunt’s husband, the big shot cop. Hailey and Vaughn don’t see eye to eye, and they tend to bump heads, and something about him strikes Hailey as dangerous. When her suspicious start to lead her into dangerous territory, the death of someone Hailey cares for changes everything. Now it is a race against a mysterious killer—someone hunting young women along the highway.

Wow. This book was powerful. The characters were so bold, so well developed, and absolutely incredible. The imagery used to bring the scenes to life was stunning. You can almost smell the trees and feel the cool breeze from the lake.

I loved Hailey’s character. She was so smart. So strong. And she is the epitome of a survivor. I loved Jonny and his friendship with Hailey. I loved how different, yet similar, Beth and Hailey were. The personalities were so realistic and so carefully sculpted. Wolf was also an incredible character. I loved that aspect of Hailey not being completely alone.

The pacing of this story is intense. And the buildup was very well done. I love that Chevy chose to bring a factional version of the Highway of Tears to life. Bringing attention to a true and devastating crime through the brilliance of a writer’s imagination is genius. And Chevy was so respectful and so considerate in how she told this tale.

The power of emotion of choice is so intensely relevant throughout this novel. Everything about this novel is absolute perfection. The twists were so well done, and the terror was very realistic. I love that Chevy took a tragedy and chose to give it a happy ending of sorts. The power behind that is beautiful.

I think my favorite part of this novel was the epilogue. It contains some of the most beautiful and powerful writing I have ever read. It was the perfect way to end this story. Things may not have finished tied neatly with a bow, but the raw love and heart of this story are evident.

This is such a powerful tale of family, friendship, and love. The heartbreak is palpable, the fear is real, and the desire to survive is strong. This has to be one of the most beautiful novels I have ever read.

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