When the Stars Go Dark by Paula McLain (Book Review)

I’m always on the lookout for mystery stories that stand out, and When the Stars Go Dark by Paula McLain definitely fit the bill.

After a traumatic accident, Anna Hart, a missing persons detective, returns to her small hometown of Mendocino, CA. Hiding away in a cabin in the woods, she learns that a teenage girl is missing. She can’t help but get involved in the search for the girl – but can she trust her instincts?

*I received this book for free from the publisher (Random House – Ballantine Books in exchange for an honest review.

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When the Stars Go Dark by Paula McLain book review

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When the Stars Go Dark by Paula McLain: My Thoughts

Paula McLain has branched out from historical fiction to write this gem of a mystery novel! Technically, this is somewhat historical: it’s set in 1993, which sets it apart from modern crime fiction. It takes the reader back to a time before widespread Internet usage and social media.

When I first started reading, I was a little worried. The very beginning felt somewhat bogged down by metaphors. Fortunately, this seemed to level out after the beginning, and I didn’t notice it anymore after that. In fact, overall, the writing was very engaging, with just the right amount of detail to make you feel like you’re there.

I loved the setting, weaving between small-town California and the wildness of national forests.

When the Stars Go Dark is a deeply emotional, atmospheric mystery with a complex and interesting protagonist. Highly recommended! 

Rating: 4.5 (out of 5) stars

Release date: April 13th, 2021

Looking for more great book recommendations? Check out my list of exciting April 2021 Fiction Book Releases!

When the Stars Go Dark by Paula McLain book review

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