The River Is Dark (Liam Dempsey, #1) by Joe Hart

The River Is Dark (Liam Dempsey, #1)

Ex-homicide detective Liam Dempsey is waiting to die. His career, the only thing he ever knew how to do well, is over. The single solace each day brings is the ever-growing contemplation of suicide. But when his estranged brother and sister-in-law are brutally murdered in their bucolic town set on the banks of the Mississippi River, he is drawn into an investigation surrounding a string of killings unlike anything he has ever seen before. The mur...

Details The River Is Dark (Liam Dempsey, #1)

TitleThe River Is Dark (Liam Dempsey, #1)
Release DateSep 23rd, 2014
PublisherThomas & Mercer
GenreMystery, Thriller, Horror, Crime

Reviews The River Is Dark (Liam Dempsey, #1)

  • Luvtoread
    The book opens with an explosive beginning that you cannot stop reading even if you wanted to. This story had a little bit of everything in it, horror, crime, mystery, terror, romance and suspense throughout the story. This was a fast read since it was hard to put the book down and I couldn't wait to find out what would happen next. I thought I had the solved the (who and where was the killer?) mystery, but to my delight, my assumptions were wron...
  • Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
    The story takes place along the banks of the Mississippi river. The story however does not travel at a snails pace. The book begins with you on the edge of your seat and it did not let up until the very end.I did figure out where the story was going but it was still an enjoyable trip to get there. Hart's writing was that perfect blend of spooky and pulse racing.Liam finds out that his estranged brother and his wife have both been brutally murdere...
  • Patrice Hoffman
    The River is Dark opens to an explosively grim scene involving a child running from a monster. Immediately it's obvious the pace of Joe Hart's novel will move swiftly. Retired Detective Liam Dempsey goes to a Tallston, Minnesota after he receives news that his brother and sister in law have been brutally murdered. Their young son is in the hospital in critical condition fighting for his life.Liam initially comes off as the damaged detective many ...
  • Kimberly
    Liam Dempsey, a former detective, is called to his estranged brother's town after learning that his brother and sister in law were the second couple brutally murdered in a short period of time.Liam's own life is in turmoil after a work incident leaves him wishing that he could end his own life--but the guilt renders him unable to allow himself such an escape. Going back to bury his older brother (who had hated him all of his life), Liam finds him...
  • Maxine (Booklover Catlady)
    I am a recent convert to liking the writing of Joe Hart, this book did not let me down at all from what I expected it to be. A lot of crime books have a very similar plot and approach to them, I found The River Is Dark to be different. Much of the perspective (and the detective work) is being done by former homicide Detective, Liam Dempsey, rather than a massive focus on the police and it being a police procedural, it has more of a "private detec...
  • Gatorman
    Pretty standard thriller from Hart about a man who returns to his hometown to deal with his estranged brother and sister-in-law's murders. Not much original here and filled with the usual cliches for the genre, but the characters are likable and the story does move along at a nice pace. I went in with low expectations which probably helped. One of those stories you forget pretty much right after you finish. Literary Chinese food. 2.5 stars bumped...
  • Bill
    This was a fast and furious one from Joe Hart. Not overly high on the originality scale and scattered with horror clichés, this one still managed to grab me from the beginning and Joe’s storytelling pulled me thru the rest of the way. This would make one hell of a movie.Ex-Det. Liam Dempsey doesn't sleep well. His estranged brother Alan and his wife Suzie fall victim to a brutal home invasion murder. Now Liam must go back to the small town of ...
  • JudiAnne
    No longer a police detective, Liam Dempsey quickly sets out to investigate the barbaric murders of his brother and his sister-in-law when he gets a call from Special Agent Phelps informing him of the home invasion of his brother and sister-in-law in Tallston, Minnesota. When he arrives he learns his brother’s best friends were also murdered the day before. Liam’s nephew has survived and is in the hospital. When he is questioned he claims he s...
  • Blake Crouch
    Liam Dempsey, the protagonist of The River is Dark, arrives in Tallston, Minnesota, a sleepy, scenic town on the banks of the Mississippi River. An ex-homicide detective, he’s come to investigate the grizzly murder of his estranged brother and his brother’s wife, and to set their affairs in order. But these murders are different. His family wasn’t just killed. They were literally torn apart, and their deaths are just the beginning of a ramp...
  • Kimberly
    Liam Dempsey, a former detective, is called to his estranged brother's town after learning that his brother and sister in law were the second couple brutally murdered in a short period of time.Liam's own life is in turmoil after a work incident leaves him wishing that he could end his own life--but the guilt renders him unable to allow himself such an escape. Going back to bury his older brother (who had hated him all of his life), Liam finds him...
  • ✨Susan✨
    Liam is an ex-detective who returns to his home town after his brother and his brothers wife are murdered in their home. Upon his arrival he and an old heartthrob, who has also come back to town for the funerals, start an investigation. The local sheriff enlists Liam's help to figure out who might be behind the murder of two separate couples in their homes, within a week of each other. The murders were of such a gruesome nature that they are imme...
  • Heather *Awkward Queen and Unicorn Twin*
    I enjoyed this thriller. It was fast-paced and kept me interested. The main character, a former detective, managed to avoid the usual clichés of the role: he was haunted by his past without being practically dysfunctional because of it, and he retained a sense of humor rather than turning into an incurable brooder.A lot of times I have issues with the way male authors write female love interests (or just female characters in general), but in thi...
  • Thomas Strömquist
    I've agonized over this review for quite a while now and decided that it was time to bite the bullet. My decision was to go strictly with the Goodreads definition of rating and therefore this one gets one star from me; "did not like it" - this should be interpreted as " I did not like it" and says absolutely nothing (as always, but seems to merit pointing out sometimes) about how someone else might feel about it.(view spoiler)[The blurb tells ab...
  • Jon Recluse
    Review pending
  • Sandy
    3.5 stars"The monster is killing my parents". (Eek!)So Eric, a young boy hiding upstairs under a bed, tells the 911 operator while a horrific crime is committed in his home. Meanwhile, miles away, former police detective Liam Dempsey wakes up to another day where his first thought is whether or not to use the gun in his closet. He's interrupted by a phone call informing him his brother & sister in law have been murdered in their home outside a sm...
  • Kelly
    ****3.5 stars****
  • Alisi ☆ wants to read too many books ☆
    This book is weird and thus this review will be weird. Probably. It's hard to describe this book... I know. I know. I said I'd never try another Hart book but I needed something -- ANYTHING -- to get the memory of Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea out of my mind (still need to write a review for that but can you see me cringing?)Anyway!This book isn't bad on the surface and the idea isn't bad. I don't even mind the premise and, while the mo...
  • Trish R.
    This was a pretty good murder mystery. It involved a retired detective who had a whole lot of baggage when he got a call that his brother and sister-in-law had been murdered. So, now he had more problems, including his desire to use his service revolver on himself. I really wasn’t crazy about reading that. That makes me think our hero isn’t wrapped to tightly. But, when he got to the town where his brother had lived he ran into the girl that ...
  • Kim
    Liam is called to a small town on the Mississippi River when he learns that his brother and his wife have been killed. He learns that another couple had been found in similar circumstances. Although he is feeling very low at the moment he is leading the investigation into his estranged brothers murder.A little boy holds the only clue- he’d made a terrified call saying that the monster was killing his parents. He is in a coma in the hospital.Thi...
  • Mommacat
    THE RIVER IS DARK is a traditional murder mystery told from the point of view of Liam. His brother and sister-in-law have just been killed leaving his nephew hospitalized. Two weeks prior, their best friends were brutally murdered. Why is the killer singling these people out? Are the murders going to continue?When the town Sheriff gives Liam the go ahead to investigate on his own he finds out more than he ever expected about the small town doctor...
  • Kristin
    I received an arc copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you NetGalley!Quite predictable and the writing was a little clinical at times, particularly at the beginning, but overall, I really did enjoy it. Fast paced and kept me turning the pages as the story unfolded. The characters were well developed and likeable, particularly Liam, Dani, and of course Ashes. If you like thriller/mysteries, it's worth the read.
  • Mauoijenn ~ *Mouthy Jenn* ~
    This was a good quick thriller. Joe Hart did a great job. Characters were detailed and the writing just grabbed your attention. Excellent!
  • Erin
    ARC for review. Liam Dempsey is a former cop (for all the normal former cop reasons) and he's feeling suicidal (for all the normal former cop reasons). When he hears about the murder of his estranged brother and his wife he feels obligated to go to the small town where his brother died and, naturally, becomes involved in the mystery.Overall this was a perfectly serviceable thriller, if a bit standard (the re-appearing love interest, the local cop...
  • Mary
    Cringe-worthy cliches and plot holes abound in this "thriller" which was not actually all that thrilling since the killer's identity was easily guessed at. What saved it from 2 stars and a scathing review was the writing, which was pretty decent--the main character is well-developed and at times showed a glimmer of being more than just a depressed, self-pitying bore. Also, I was able to read it for free through Kindle Unlimited so I don't have a ...
  • Jool
    What a great read! The main protagonist, Liam Dempsey, is likeable, serious, realistic, and makes this a great book. All the characters are realistic. I plan to read book 2 in this series soon, and I know it will be engrossing and I will be unable to put it down, just like this one! Highly recommend.
  • Linda K. Melzer
    Excellent read! Hard to put down!I like Joe Hart's Liam Dempsey and I plan to read straight through to #2. There's enough gore and murder for every horror fan, without being over the edge for wusses like me. There is a delightful touch of romance and sex. The action is nonstop and I have to admit I didn't have a clue about the ending. Be sure to read it. You won't regret it!!
  • Lori L (She Treads Softly)
    The River Is Dark by Joe Hart is a highly recommended, fast paced thriller that will hold your attention right to the end.The opening scene is of a frightened young boy trying to escape from a murderer. Then the action focuses on Liam Dempsey. Liam has just learned that his brother, Allen, and sister-in-law, Suzie, have been brutally murdered in the small town of Tollston, Minnesota where his physician brother had his medical practice. What he do...
  • Cheryl
    “The river is dark, and the night isn’t something to swim in.”I'm quite a fan of author Joe Hart. I've been on kind of a mini-readathon of some of his books and stories over the last few days. And this book is another fine example of WHY I'm spending my time doing this.Liam Dempsey used to be a homicide detective. Now he's just a broken man trying to deal with his nightmares. And things ramp up when he gets a phone call that his brother and...
  • Rabbit {Paint me like one of your 19th century gothic heroines!}
    Disclaimer: This ARC was given to me for free in exchange for an honest review from Netgalley.Rating: 3.5This was a quick read, once I really started to read it. I finished it within two hours, so if you have an afternoon to read (think rainy or snowy, with hot beverage of choice) this would be perfect.There was a love story, but it was mostly insta-love, though they apparently knew each other before in backstory. I didn't really get a feel for t...
  • Steven Montano
    I'm embarrassed to admit that prior to now I hadn't read any of Joe's work. I'm proud to say that after reading "The River is Dark", I'll be reading it again.Liam is a former cop haunted by recent trauma. Drawn home by the brutal murder of his brother's family, Liam is soon embroiled in a dire small town mystery as he tries to track down a crazed killer before he strikes again.Joe does a terrific job of taking familiar elements of the mystery/thr...