My Tuesday Thriller this week is the ‘absolutely gripping and pulse-racing crime thriller, Her Shallow Grave, by D.K. Hood, which was published by Bookouture on 10 July.
It’s winter in Black Rock Falls and, as tourists flock to the small town to take in the snowy mountain peaks, one visitor makes a sickening discovery. The frozen body of a young woman hangs from a tree on the outskirts of town. Detective Jenna Alton is called in to investigate.
Jenna’s stomach turns as she surveys the ice-cold remains, and she’s soon alerted to similar burial sites nearby. With no missing persons reported, Jenna and her deputy, David Kane, fear Black Rock Falls is being used as a dumping ground for bodies.
As the body count mounts up, Jenna is more determined than ever to find the person responsible. But as she tries to catch the killer out, he outsmarts her once again and Jenna begins to wonder if he knows her next move. Could he be closer to her than she thinks?
Where am I? Evelyn Ross opened her eyes wide but only darkness pressed in on her. Had she lost her sight? Her head pounded and thirst had stuck her tongue to the roof of her mouth. Too afraid to move and heart pounding with fear, she touched her face, feeling to make sure her eyes were open. Her memory of last night was foggy, like reaching for an elusive dream. Where had she been? The memory of taking a ride into a town dusted with snow, filtered into her subconscious. She’d planned to look for a meal and a place to hole up until she found work. She searched her mind, grasping at ghosts, but the memory of what had happened after she’d arrived in town had vanished.
There was no valid explanation, nothing but a void existed, it was as if someone had stolen time from her. From the stale damp smell, perhaps, she’d crawled into someone’s cellar or was in a shed but it was the middle of winter and although chilled, she should be freezing. Sudden moves could mean falling into the dark unknown. She took deep breaths of air that smelled like the bottom of her grandma’s closet. Trembling with panic, she explored her surroundings with her fingers and found the unusual texture of rough blankets under her. The idea of someone locking her in a confined space was her biggest nightmare and she raised both arms above her in blind panic. As she stretched her fingers above and out to the sides, finding only air, she breathed a sigh of relief.
Darkness rose like a wall around her, she had to move and at least try to find a way out. She rolled onto one side, and examined what was under her, finding the distinct surrounds of a bed or perhaps bunk; more exploration found the head of the bed. She sat up and dropped her legs off the edge and her feet touched the floor. The next moment, she heard footsteps and the sound of a door closing. Whoever was upstairs had moved into another room. This was her chance to slip away unnoticed. She’d gotten in here somehow and there had to be a way out. She eased off the bed and dropping to her hands and knees, edged forward until she found the wall. In the darkness, she searched every inch of the cellar, running her hands over the walls until her fingernails bled before she found the staircase. At the top, a tiny line of light crept under the door. She fixed on it like a beacon and crept up the steps. At the top, she pressed her ear to the door. When no sound came from outside, she tried the knob, turning it slowly but the door didn’t move.
As if someone was outside the door, listening, she heard a low chuckle and the jangle of keys.
“You’re never leaving me.” The voice was deep and masculine.
Angry, she hammered on the door. “Let me out!”
“I don’t think so.” He thumped on the door. “Are you thirsty? Hungry? You’ll have to be nice if you want to eat. If you don’t cooperate, you’ll be punished.” His voice changed, becoming hard. “I’m sick of playing games with you, you’re no fun at all. Get back downstairs or I’ll kill you—it’s your choice.”
She screamed for help until her throat ached and her voice came out in a whimper but it only seemed to amuse him.
“Yeah, scream. I like that and no one can hear you.” He chuckled again. “No one is coming to save you, Delores.”
“Who is Delores? My name is Evelyn. You have the wrong person.” She shook her head in defiance, wishing her voice was more than a feeble croak.
“I know exactly who you are, Delores.” He sounded self-assured and she could hear the excitement in his voice. “I control every breath you take. You belong to me.”
“No! I’ll never belong to you.” She banged on the door. “Let me out!”
The door flew open, hitting her in the face. Her feet slipped and she fell backward into darkness. Agony ricocheted into her back as she slammed into the steps and then bounced down the stairs like a rag doll. Gasping to draw air into her bruised lungs, she closed her eyes. She’d broken one arm for sure and her hip hurt so bad, yet she’d survived. Nauseous from intolerable pain, she lay panting in a tangled mess on the cold cement floor. High above, the open door flooded the room with light. A man stood in the doorway, the backlight making his dark shadow menacing, but it was the glint of the weapon in his hand that petrified her. A light came on in the cellar and she made out his cold dark eyes. He was watching her without expression.
“You’ve been a very bad girl, Delores.” He rubbed the muzzle of his Glock against his chin. “You’ve broken my rules and spoiled everything. We could’ve had so much fun.”
Terrified, Evelyn stared at him. “We can still have fun. Please don’t hurt me. I’ll be good, I promise.”
“It’s too late.” He chuckled as if at a private joke. “It always ends up like this, doesn’t it, Delores? You begging for your life and offering me the world?” He aimed the pistol at her and smiled. “You already know the end to the story.”
The steps creaked under his weight. He was enjoying her fear. In sheer terror, she tried to drag her battered body away and hide but the sound of heavy footsteps followed her, walking slow. There was no escape and he had all the time in the world. I’m going to die.
Chilling, isn’t it? If you want to find out what happens, you can grab a copy of the book here:
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, USA TODAY and Amazon Bestselling Author of The Detective Kane and Alton Series, D.K Hood lives very quietly with her husband and has a small but beautiful garden filled with birds and water dragons.
Thank you for dropping by to tell us about your new book, D.K. Wishing you lots of sales!
My first psychological thriller will be out later this year. Look out for the cover reveal, coming soon.