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‘Raw, powerful, beautiful – devastatingly good’ TM Logan, bestselling author of The Holiday

‘Beautiful and harrowing and everything in between’ Chris Whitaker, award-winning author of We Begin at the End

Sometimes it’s better not to ask questions. Sometimes it’s better not to know.

Eve Taggert’s life has been spent steadily climbing away from her roots. Her mother, a hard and cruel woman who dragged her up in a rundown trailer park, was not who she wanted to be to her own daughter, Junie.

But 12-year old Junie is now dead. Found next to the body of her best friend in the park of their small, broken town. Eve has nothing left but who she used to be.

Despite the corrupt police force that patrol her dirt-poor town deep in the Missouri Ozarks, Eve is going to find what happened to her daughter. Even if it means using her own mother’s cruel brand of strength to unearth secrets that don’t want to be discovered and face truths it might be better not to know.

Everyone is a suspect.

Everyone has something to hide.

And someone will answer for her daughter’s murder.

From the bestselling author of The Roanoke Girls, The Familiar Dark is a spellbinding story about the bonds of family as well as a story about how even the darkest and most terrifying of places can provide the comfort of home. The Familiar Dark will blow you away.


‘Dark and beautifully written. Spellbinding’ Catherine Steadman, bestselling author of Something in the Water

‘Absolutely bloody brilliant. It’s so well-written I felt like I was living her pain’ Fiona Cummins, award-winning author of The Neighbour

‘Dark, moving, intriguing. Truly inspiring’ Susan Lewis, bestselling author of One Minute Later

‘Powerful, gripping, heart-stopping’ Laura McHugh, award-winning author of The Wolf Wants In

‘From its gripping beginning to its sobering finale, Amy Engel’s The Familiar Dark never fails to enthral with surprising twists’ Daily Mail

‘This is fierce and brilliant’ The Observer


Absolutely bloody brilliant. A down-at-heel mother burns with a need to exact her own brand of justice after the murder of her 12-year-old daughter. It's so well-written I felt like I was living her pain. Very highly recommended.
Fiona Cummins, bestselling author of, The Neighbour
I was completely enthralled from start to finish. Very dark, moving, intriguing and such compelling characters. What a fantastic writer Amy is. Truly inspiring; a real talent at work and I hope this book receives all the success it deserves
Susan Lewis, bestselling author of, One Minute Later
I'm such a HUGE Roanoke fan so my hopes were sky high and it delivered in every possible way. As visceral as it is gripping, the story packs the kind of haunting gut-punch that Amy is so good at. It's just beautiful and harrowing and everything in between.
Chris Whitaker, award winning author of All The Wicked Girls
A dark and beautifully written thriller with a haunting ending that will stay with you long after you've turned the last page. Engel's ability to conjure the harsh beauty of the Ozarks is spellbinding. An emotional & powerful read
Catherine Steadman, bestselling author of, Something in the Water
The Familiar Dark is full of very bad people who occasionally do the right thing and seemingly good people who hide their own demons, every nuance of human nature is here wrapped up in a hugely addictive piece of storytelling. The end, when it comes, is extraordinarily horrific in its reality and leaves you melancholy and full of feeling. This was brilliant. All the way. Don't miss it in 2020.
Liz Loves Books
A harrowing thriller . . . This rural noir stakes Engel's claim to that dystopian terrain somewhere between Gillian Flynn's Sharp Objects and Daniel Woodrell's Winter's Bone
Publishers Weekly
This is fierce and brilliant
The Observer
From its gripping beginning to its sobering finale, Amy Engel's The Familiar Dark never fails to enthral with surprising twists . . . a perceptive story about women surviving against odds, a mother´s unconditional love, as well as grief, poverty and classism . . . Engel´s characters would have much in common with those in Gillian Flynn´s Sharp Objects
Daily Mail
Raw, powerful, beautiful - devastatingly good
TM Logan, bestselling author of The Holiday
Powerful, gripping, heart-stopping
Laura McHugh, award-winning author of The Wolf Wants In
This rural noir is full of twists and turns . . . Gripping and hard to put down
Hello Magazine
A story about grief, pretence and family, written by a former criminal defence lawyer, it tugs at the heartstrings with its raw emotional truth
Daily Mail
icily heartbreaking
The Metro
Engel's prose is sharp and often brutal, and result is a seriously impressive thriller