A roller-coaster ride…
The twin specters of revenge and redemption drive this stunning debut by Cox which features Chicago PD Detective Tyler Morgan and his newly-appointed partner Annabelle Herrera. While Detective Tyler Morgan is on duty, his wife and young daughter are killed at their home brutally. Unable to cope with the loss of his family, Tyler plunges himself into the dark depths of depression and alcohol. When a new lead points to the killers being apprehended, Tylor takes charge of the investigation with Annabelle Herrera as his partner. Whereas Annabelle is a sucker for procedural-accuracy, Tyler has nothing but blood on his mind. As the pair chases new leads, the difference in their ideology gets in Tyler’s way of setting scores with the criminals. Will Tyler do the right thing? The story displays well Cox’s gift for turning a familiar revenge plot inside-out as questions of doing right overwhelm his protagonists. The increasingly complex life of its protagonists and the intricacy of their confounding emotions as they struggle with the questions of picking between right and wrong provide the story both depth and substance. Cox sketches Tyler’s character with understanding and sympathy. Despite his gradual descent into darkness, his journey stays both interesting and significant, making the reader root for him throughout. Annabelle’s role as Tyler’s overly-righteous and yet sympathetic partner who relentlessly makes him question his own decisions is drawn with conviction. Cox’s narrative is swift, the characterization sophisticated, and his skill to seamlessly mesh setting, investigative details, and character makes this an absolute page-turner. Lovers of fast-paced crime thrillers will be wise to pick this one.
Ashes of the Living
By John Cox
Pub date March 6, 2021
Dark Enigma Press LLC
Price $4.02 (USD) Kindle edition
Categories: Suspense and Thriller