Book Review: Dark Water by Robert Bryndza

I was fortunate to receive a copy of Dark Water by Robert Bryndza as part of a Twitter giveaway. After reading a number of romance novels, I felt it was time to dip into something a little more serious.

Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Detective


Beneath the water the body sank rapidly. She would lie still and undisturbed for many years but above her on dry land, the nightmare was just beginning.

When Detective Erika Foster receives a tip-off that key evidence for a major narcotics case was stashed in a disused quarry on the outskirts of London, she orders for it to be searched. From the thick sludge the drugs are recovered, but so is the skeleton of a young child.

The remains are quickly identified as seven-year-old Jessica Collins. The missing girl who made headline news twenty-six years ago.

As Erika tries to piece together new evidence with the old, she must dig deeper and find out more about the fractured Collins family and the original detective, Amanda Baker. A woman plagued by her failure to find Jessica. Erika soon realises this is going to be one of the most complex and demanding cases she has ever taken on.

Is the suspect someone close to home? Someone is keeping secrets. Someone who doesn’t want this case solved. And they’ll do anything to stop Erika from finding the truth.

My thoughts:

I love reading detective stories and Erika Foster is one detective I have not come across before. Dark Water is the third book in the series but, in my experience, it did not matter that I had not read the previous stories.

The content of the murder investigation may be upsetting to some as it is based on the murder of a child. The fact that a child was murdered, however, pushes the detective even more to solve the case. The detective of the cold case is a woman who has gone through some personal trouble herself; and is a person who takes no nonsense. Erika Foster is a woman who cannot be bothered with the niceties; and who has made her job as a police officer her life. I enjoy watching the gritty detective shows produced by BBC, and this novel was written in that manner.

Dark Water is a well written novel that I could not put down. Hints to solve the mystery are peppered throughout the story – and yet, as the reader, I was still a little surprised by the outcome because I did not fully solve the case. I like that the ending was a little unexpected as the fact that I could not solve the mystery kept me engaged in the story.

Because the story is part of a series, the characterization of Erika Foster is detailed. As I had not read the previous two novels, I did not know the details of her backstory – though it was hinted at through dialogue among the characters. Not knowing the details, however, did not detract from my enjoyment of the book. Instead, I grew to like the salty detective and have decided I would like to read the other books in the series.

This Erika Foster novel is a must read if you enjoy detective stories – especially those set in England. Dark Water is not a twisty psychological thriller and is instead one of those mystery stories that slowly reveals the outcome to a satisfying end.

I give this novel ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4 stars

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2019

(This novel was the 105th in my book pledge for 2019)

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