A Flicker in the Dark by Stacy Willingham – Gripping Mystery Novel

A Flicker in the Dark by Stacy Willingham

A Flicker in the Dark is a fast-paced mystery/thriller novel that follows the story of a small-town detective named Abigail Hale, who is investigating a series of brutal murders in her community. The killer, known as the “Flicker,” is targeting young women and leaving behind cryptic clues and messages. As Abigail races to uncover the identity of the killer and stop the murders, she is forced to confront her own dark past and the secrets that she has been keeping from those around her.


Abigail Hale is a complex and well-developed protagonist, who is haunted by her own personal demons while also striving to bring justice to the victims of the Flicker’s murders. Other key characters in the novel include Abigail’s partner, a tech-savvy police officer named Ryan, and various suspects and witnesses who all have their own hidden agendas and motivations.

Writing style:

Stacy Willingham’s writing style is clear and concise, with a strong sense of pacing and tension that keeps the reader engaged throughout the novel. The dialogue is well-crafted and natural, and the descriptions of the setting and characters are vivid and immersive.

Theme or message:

At its core, “A Flicker in the Dark” is a story about the consequences of secrets and the lengths that people will go to protect them. It also explores the idea of justice and the different ways that individuals can seek it out, both through the legal system and through personal vengeance.


The novel takes place in a small, fictional town in the American Midwest, which is portrayed as a tight-knit community with its own unique customs and culture. The setting adds to the overall sense of isolation and paranoia that permeates the novel.


The pacing of “A Flicker in the Dark” is one of its greatest strengths, with a steady build-up of tension and suspense that keeps the reader on the edge of their seat throughout the novel. The plot is well-constructed, with plenty of twists and turns that will keep readers guessing until the very end.


The tone of “A Flicker in the Dark” is dark and gritty, with a sense of unease and tension that permeates the novel from beginning to end. The themes of violence and fear are explored in a way that is both thoughtful and nuanced, and the novel’s bleak atmosphere is well-crafted and immersive.

Point of view:

The novel is written in the third person, with a focus on Abigail Hale as the main protagonist. This allows the reader to gain insight into Abigail’s thoughts and emotions, while also providing a broader perspective on the other characters and their motivations.

Plot twists or surprises:

There are several plot twists and surprises throughout the novel, particularly in the latter half of the story, which will keep readers guessing and engaged until the very end.

Critique or analysis:

One critique of the novel is that some of the character motivations and plot points feel a bit contrived or predictable. However, this is a minor issue in an otherwise well-crafted and engaging story.


I would highly recommend “A Flicker in the Dark” to fans of the mystery/thriller genre. The novel’s well-developed characters, strong writing style, and fast-paced plot make for an exciting and thought-provoking read. With its dark and immersive atmosphere, “A Flicker in the Dark” is a novel that will stick with readers long after they have finished reading.

Overall rating or evaluation:

On a scale of one to ten, I would give “A Flicker in the Dark” by Stacy Willingham an 8.5. The novel is a well-written and engaging mystery/thriller that will keep readers on the edge of their seat from start to finish. While there are a few minor issues with the plot and character development, these are outweighed by the novel’s many strengths, including its well-crafted setting, its complex and nuanced protagonist, and its strong sense of pacing and tension.

Overall, “A Flicker in the Dark” is a must-read for anyone who enjoys the mystery/thriller genre, and a great example of the kind of high-quality genre fiction that is being produced today.

In conclusion

“A Flicker in the Dark” is a well-written and engaging mystery/thriller that is sure to appeal to fans of the genre. While it may not be perfect, it is a strong and compelling debut novel that showcases Willingham’s skill as a writer. If you’re looking for a fast-paced and suspenseful read, then “A Flicker in the Dark” is definitely worth checking out.

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