Author: Nalini Singh
Released: December 3rd, 2019
Warnings: Animal death, abuse, sexual assault, affairs, miscarriages
It’s time for beloved author Nalini Singh to dive into the world of thrillers. Here she’s introducing us to a new world, one that is soaked with sunshine and mystery. A Madness of Sunshine is a thrilling tale of murder, mystery, and full of small town charm.
Set on the West Coast of New Zealand, this novel takes a deep dive into the culture and history of one very small town. This is the town that Anahera grew up in. It’s the town she left. And now, it’s the town she’s returning to.
But things are not as calm and quiet as they appear. Women have gone missing before. But it wasn’t until one of their own went missing that the alarm bells started ringing. There’s a murderer in the midst of this quiet and sun-soaked town.
“Anahera had stood stone-faced, staring down at the gleaming mahogany coffin she’d chosen because that was what Edward would’ve wanted.”
Warnings: As with any thriller, A Madness of Sunshine touches upon the darker sides of humanity. As such, there are examples of murder and adultery mentioned in this book, as well as rape (mentioned, never shown).
A Madness of Sunshine was an intense and colorful read. It had a surprising amount of small town charm, all while showcasing that darkness can be found anywhere. Even in the sunniest of locations.
I’ll confess to you now; I haven’t yet read any of Nalini Singh’s novels. I’ve been meaning to for quite some time, but haven’t yet gotten around to it. So when I saw that she was starting a new series/novel and that it was a thriller, I knew that I had to jump on it!
Anahera was the leading perspective in this novel. Her backstory was surprisingly complex, but it did give her a good reason to both leave and return from her town. Likewise, the town itself was so much more complicated than I expected. It seemed like everywhere we turned there was another growing concern. It was brilliantly written, as Singh made it very difficult to pick up which threads were the relevant ones.
I’ll confess that I did find some of the plot twists a little forced or obvious at times. That goes more so towards the end of the book than the earlier bits. I actually adored the first half of this novel, all of the details and character development. I just wish more of those tones and elements carried the whole way through, if that makes sense.
On the whole, I really did enjoy A Madness of Sunshine. I think I’m just a bit particular with my thriller novels – especially in regards to how they end. So please do take my opinion with a grain of salt. And don’t hesitate to give this one a try, if you’ve been tempted to do so.
I think that this is Nalini Singh’s first foray into thrillers. I honestly would be extremely curious to see if she continues writing in this vein and if so, I have no doubt that I’ll pick up whatever she comes up with next. I’m seeing a lot of potential here, and that makes her worth keeping an eye on.