Suzanne Brockmann’s latest hardcover, Dark of Night, finally wraps a long-running arc in a way that I enjoyed quite a bit. It is a tight follow-up to Into the Fire, and as a result, I’m not sure how much to say about it. I mean, yes, its jacket copy does contain the big spoiler from the end of Fire—so don’t read it if you haven’t read Fire yet!—but Fire only came out last summer and isn’t out in paperback yet. I think I can say that the arc in question is the one that started in Flashpoint, which, really, is probably sufficient for fans of the series. And the action plot is very hard to put down, even though I suspect it doesn’t actually make sense in spots. (Also, I didn’t believe that certain characters were in genuine jeopardy, because the number of pages devoted to said jeopardy was not proportional to the characters’ importance in the series, which is one of the downsides of long open-ended series.)
As for non-plot issues: I was impressed that I finally liked Decker, who I’ve previously found tedious. I think the prologue is one of Brockmann’s more effective pieces of writing. And even though this is the book in which Dave gets to be a bad-ass, I wish all the characters didn’t take it on faith that he would never betray anyone under torture, since it’s my understanding that no matter how bad-ass you are, eventually you talk, whether or not you actually have the information being sought.
I suspect Brockmann is getting a lot of flack over certain developments in this book, but I thought they worked very well and continue to appreciate her determination to write the stories she wants, rather than the ones she thinks people expect.