cover image Somewhere in the Dark

Somewhere in the Dark

R.J. Jacobs. Crooked Lane, $26.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-6438-5300-0

Emotionally fragile Jessie Duval, the narrator of this unnerving psychological thriller from Jacobs (And Then You Were Gone), who was held in a closet for more than a year by foster parents when she was a minor, is doing well for herself in Nashville, Tenn., where she regularly sees a therapist and has a job she likes with a catering company. Then, at a party attended by celebrity musicians where Jessie is working as a server, she spots singer Shelly James. Jessie was once one of Shelly’s groupies, a fact she wishes to keep under wraps, considering Shelly served a restraining order against her. Around the same time, Jessie was arrested and served time in jail for assaulting a man she perceived as a threat at a concert. When Shelly turns up dead in a park with her head battered in, Jessie realizes she must do some investigating before she becomes the prime suspect. Jessie’s search for answers leads to a chilling denouement. Jacobs immediately hooks the reader with Jessie’s engrossing if not particularly nuanced story. Fans of Amy Engels and Mindy Mejia will be delighted. Agent: Rachel Ekstrom, Folio Literary Management. (Aug.)