Review by: Rox Burkey
This is not my typical genre, True-Crime, but I can honestly say it grabbed me and kept me. I was saddened beyond belief and even shed some tears over something that in my opinion should never have occurred.
The vivid descriptions the author uses start on page one and were more aligned in my mind with horror fiction, not true crime. No one could be this cruel to another being. Where you read the passage below you get the first glimpse into the senselessness of this crime and weep for the victims.
“His life essence wept into the earth, after the pipe had crashed again and again into his body, after the blade plunged over and over into his chest. His left eye brutalized by the abuse. His throat ravaged, his lips, torn and bloated, his gums savagely inflamed, displaying empty hollow sockets where his teeth had been.
But all this the boy could endure. If he could rise above the suffering, he would survive.
Hope arrived as a whisper and blanketed his misery…”
This particular crime had a lot of documentation and valuable interviews to present it from all sides. This, however, for me was the start of understanding the author’s ability as an empath to all the people who took part in this sadness.
Abra Stevens, with her knowledge in assembling complex litigation cases, is amply capable of allowing the reader to experience the story as the victim, investigator, coroner, and criminal with detailed precision. Added to this her understanding, as well as perspective, of the various documents collected during this case review.
Each and every aspect from the discovery of the body to all the investigation, arrests and trial are detailed as they are laid in almost a timeline order to allow the reader to be immersed in the story as it unfolded. It is obvious that the interviews she conducted with the various people involved in this dreadful crime, when brought together, allow the reader to see all the perspectives and walk in each pair of shoes who touched this investigation. I consider her an investigative expert on this subject from one end to the other.
The people portrayed were all scared the moment they became involved. True-Crime is far worse than most thrillers I have read. Abra Stevens is to be commended for uncovering hints of compassion not only for the victims, but also for the teenagers who chose poorly. If you like this genre it will keep you riveted to the story from first page to the conclusion. There, now don’t say I didn’t warn you about the dark tunnel ahead.
About the Author:
Abra Stevens is a former complex litigation paralegal. In concurrence with her legal career, she spent two decades as a music journalist and as Senior Editor for several regional publications.
Abra is a Texas-based True-Crime author and seeker of truth. She devoted approximately 11,000 hours researching and writing Out Here in the Darkness. During this intense process she learned a great many things. As an author who focuses on real crime and the psychological aspects, she had stated one of the most important aspects is to follow the story rather than have a preconceived idea of where you wish the story to go. In this approach she concludes, ‘maybe, at the conclusion, the two converge, or you find yourself dazzled by the direction it went.
She lives in Central Texas with her husband, four dogs, and two cats.