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  • Location: New South Wales

The Dark Lake

The Dark Lake

Why a Booktrail?

2000s: Just what secrets lie beneath the dark lake?

  • ISBN: 978-1538759905
  • Genre: Crime, Thriller

What you need to know before your trail

The lead homicide investigator in a rural town, Detective Sergeant Gemma Woodstock is deeply unnerved when a high school classmate is found strangled, her body floating in a lake. And not just any classmate, but Rosalind Ryan, whose beauty and inscrutability exerted a magnetic pull on Smithson High School, first during Rosalind’s student years and then again when she returned to teach drama.

As much as Rosalind’s life was a mystery to Gemma when they were students together, her death presents even more of a puzzle. What made Rosalind quit her teaching job in Sydney and return to her hometown? Why did she live in a small, run-down apartment when her father was one of the town’s richest men? And despite her many admirers, did anyone in the town truly know her?

Rosalind’s enigmas frustrate and obsess Gemma, who has her own dangerous secrets–an affair with her colleague and past tragedies that may not stay in the past.

Travel Guide

Smithson,  New South Wales

A fictional town in the middle of NewSouth Wales. A rural place, and but a close knit one as when Rose is found dead, the whole community is in shock.

“Set in between a burst of mountain ranges, Smithson is a little oasis of greenery in the middle of endless fawn coloured acres of Aussie farmland. Smithson is known for catching the rain that runs from the mountains which is ironic as it’s the surrounding farms that actually need it. It’s changed a lot over the last decade.”

Rose was loved by some and hated it seems by others. Geema is now a Detective sergeant who comes to investigate the case. She knew Gemma and also has her own secret from the past.
It might be close to Sydney but this is so far removed that the landscape and atmosphere create a new and claustrophobic world. Everyone knows each other and everyone know each other’s past too.

There is a sense of melancholy here, a landscape that haunts and keeps its secrts close to its chest, where emotions and secrets blow freely int he wind and where mystery cloaks each and every person living there.

Booktrailer Review

Susan: @thebooktrailer

Creepy and unsettling!

Interesting characters in this book. Gemma in particular was a deliciously mixed up and strange woman/ Terrible choices and decisions but hiding a deep dark secret which came out only later in the book. The secret of course surrounds a former friend/acquaintance who she knew when younger. Gemma gives the voice to the novel’s characters and others thoughts so you never know truth from fiction. Which is good of course in a mystery novel! It would have been  interesting to hear something from Rose I thought, in the flashbacks and a shorter novel would have made the whole thing even more claustrophobic!

The setting – Fictional Smithson but located not far from Paxton is just the grim, remote and desolate land that this kind of secret should unfurl on. The atmosphere is nicely evoked with a touch of chill and that really ramps up the secrets around that dark lake. Even the title gives me the chills – dark lake, dark water – uurgh!

Booktrail Boarding Pass:  The Dark Lake

Destination: New South Wales  Author/Guide: Sarah Bailey   Departure Time: 2000s

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