“’Be careful in your search for the truth, Kate Burkholder.’ Easing his arm away from me, he goes back to mucking. ‘You may not like what you find.’” (Page 216, Down A Dark Road)


A normal day in the life of Chief of Police Kate Burkholder goes sideways when she gets a call from the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections. Deputy Warden Jerry Murphy of the prison 100 miles away from Painters Mill painter’s calls to let her know that Joseph King has escaped their facility. The same Joseph King who was her childhood friend all those years ago and lived over on the next farm.


Locked up in the Mansfield Correctional Institution for the shotgun murder of his wife, he is somehow gotten out and is on the run. After his conviction, his five kids moved to live with his sister and her husband in Painters Mill. Rebecca and Daniel Beachy adopted the five kids and continued to raise them as Amish. That means that nobody can call and alert them to what has happened as they don’t have a phone, electricity, or many of the other things that would be available to other families at risk. As Chief of Police of Painters Mill, Ohio, it is up to Kate Burkholder to not only let the Beachys know what has happened, but bring Joseph in should he come near.


The picture she has had of Joseph King in recent years is in sharp contrast to the boy she grew up with all those many years ago. Though Joseph always claimed his innocence, the evidence and his criminal history in the months leading up to his wife’s murder told a far different story. The case turned into a media sensationalized trial and in the end Joseph was convicted of murdering his wife, Naomi King.


While Burkholder is sure that he won’t set foot anywhere near Painters Mill, a desperate man will go to amazing lengths to see his kids. It isn’t long before Kate Burkholder is reminded of that fact and a lot more in Down A Dark Road.


Once again award winning author Linda Castillo has spun an intense web of atmosphere, mystery, and memories of bygone days and people. The past is always a living character in the Burkholder mysteries and this read is no exception. A current time mystery with tentacles reaching back to multiple points in the past, the tension swiftly ratchets upward over the last third of the book as Burkholder seeks the answers so that the dead may actually rest in peace.


The latest in the series, Down A Dark Road, is highly recommended. As always is the case in any good series it is best to read in order starting with Sworn To Silence.



Down A Dark Road: A Kate Burkholder Novel

Linda Castillo

Minotaur Books (St. Martin’s Publishing Group)
July 2017
ISBN# 978-1-250-12128-8
Hardback (also available in eBook and audio formats)
304 Pages

Book provided by the good folks of the Dallas Texas Public Library System.

Kevin R. Tipple © 2018


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