cover image Darkness, My Old Friend

Darkness, My Old Friend

Lisa Unger. Crown, $24 (368p) ISBN 978-0-307-46499-6

In Unger's gripping psychological thriller, a sequel to Fragile, 15-year-old Willow Graves, a recent Manhattan transplant along with her author mother, considers the sleepy upstate New York town of the Hollows the antithesis of cool. Life becomes more interesting after Willow spots caver Michael Holt in the woods, digging what she fears is a grave. As Michael, who explores caves and abandoned mines, later explains to Willow's mother, his mother disappeared more than 25 years earlier when he was 14, and he's eager finally to solve the cold case after his father's recent death. Former cop Jones Cooper, who retired after the traumatic events of Fragile, gets tapped by his police department replacement to help. But Eloise Montgomery, the Hollows' resident psychic whom Michael has consulted along with a private detective, has visions that point to tragedy for Jones if he joins the investigation. As with Fragile, the secluded nature of the town easily lends itself to long-gestating secrets, which Unger handles much better in this follow-up that's as much about uncovering the past as it is about accepting the future. (Aug.)