Blackwater Falls introduces Detective Inaya Rahman. As a member of the Community Response Unit (CRU) for the Denver Police, her job is not only to solve murders but also to help bridge the gap between the police and the local populations. As Detective Rahman and her team investigate the murder of a young Syrian refugee, they uncover a string of disappearances. The disappearance of Muslim girls within the Blackwater community, while investigated, has largely been passed off as runway events. But the CRU team has reason to believe there is a coverup happening in Blackwater, and they indeed to find out what truly happened to the girls.
While Detective Rahman is our primary POV, we do get a few additional viewpoints throughout the story. Since I love strong female characters, I thoroughly enjoyed getting to see the thoughts of our other female leads. For the most part I felt that we got to know our main characters, and while I would like more growth, you can already feel it setting the stage for the rest of the series.
I did enjoy this book and the diversity that Khan included. I’m the first to say that I read as an escape from my busy life and what’s going on in the world. So, while I can certainly appreciate the way Khan explored immigration, racism, religious biases, and preconceived prejudices; I did feel that it bogged down the story in a few places and makes this more of a heavy read. To me it almost seemed as if Khan was trying to do too much with this first installment, and some of these themes may have been better introduced slowly over a couple of books. The romance that starts budding, is a prime example of that. It felt like an afterthought thrown in to potentially ‘soften’ the story, but I could have done without it.
I wouldn’t classify this as a thriller and would say it’s more of a literary mystery than anything else, and will certainly make you think. If you’re looking for a new Detective series, and don’t mind a more political story, than Blackwater Falls is going to be a great series for you.
Blackwater Falls is out now. Huge thank you to Minotaur Books and St. Martin’s Press for my copy in exchange for my honest opinion. If you liked this review, please let me know either by commenting below or by visiting my Instagram @speakingof.books.