The Dazzling Darkness by Paula Cappa



The author sent me a copy of this book (epub format) in exchange for an honest review.


My rating:  5  of  5  stars

(by Goodreads)

A secret lies buried beneath the haunting statuary in Old Willow Cemetery. In Concord, Massachusetts, the surrounding woods are alive with the spirits of transcendentalists Emerson, Thoreau, and Alcott. Elias Hatch, the cemetery keeper, is the last of modern-day transcendentalists. Does he know the secret power buried in Old Willow Cemetery? Would he ever reveal it?

Next door to this cemetery is a lovely gabled house. When the Brooke family moves in, the secret of Old Willow strikes. On a cold afternoon in March, five-year-old Henry Brooke does not arrive home from the school bus stop. Antonia Brooke is frantic her child is missing, or—the unspeakable—stolen. Adam Brooke spends a harrowing night searching the Concord woods, fear gripping him as hours pass with no leads.

Finally, a police dog tracks Henry’s scent inside Old Willow Cemetery. Detective Mike Balducci suspects that Elias Hatch knows the truth about what happened to Henry. Balducci knows Hatch’s metaphysical beliefs. What Balducci discovers buried in the cemetery is beyond the grave, beyond apparitions or shadowy drifts rushing through the pine trees.

There are the dazzled faces in the darkened air … and their secret.

The Dazzling Darkness is a supernatural mystery that parallels science with spirituality by exploring consciousness, death, and the afterlife.


Genre:  Mystery, Horror

Series:  n.a.

Length:  258 pages



Perucca snatched the pouch and placed it hard on the table. “Pass it on to Cavallo to keep safe. When the time comes, he will contact you through Cordone.” Perucca poured himself another glass of grappa, drank it in thirsty gulps. “We should agree on a place to meet. After it happens.”


My Opinion

The book introduces you to its protagonists, the Brooke family, Adam, Antonia, Laura, and Henry. 5-year-old Henry vanishes, and his family and the police do everything they can to get him back. I will not tell you more about the story than shown in the Goodreads plot description. This would spoil the adventure of reading this book yourself.

With The Dazzling Darkness, Paula Cappa has created an incredibly intriguing story. It is a very captivating read and – I was drawn deep into the story right away. The Dazzling Darkness is entertaining in a dark and mysterious way. Paula Cappa knew how to combine fiction, history, and belief to create an unforgettable story.

This book is unforgettable; despite that it is worth reading at least a second time.


About the author

Paula Cappa’s novels include Night Sea Journey, A Tale of the Supernatural, and The Dazzling Darkness (Gothic Readers Book Club Award Winner for Outstanding Fiction and Readers’ Favorite Bronze Medal Award), published by Crispin Books. Her short fiction has appeared in Whistling Shade Literary Journal, SmokeLong Quarterly, Dark Gothic Resurrected, Every Day Fiction, Sirens Ezine, Fiction365, Twilight Times Ezine, and in anthologies Journals of Horror: Found Fiction, Mystery Time, and Human Writes Literary Journal. Cappa’s writing career began as a freelance journalist for newspapers in New York and Connecticut. She writes a weekly blog, Reading Fiction, Tales of Terror.



Connect with the Author:

Amazon:  Paula Cappa
Amazon US:  Buy link
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Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about The Dazzling Darkness?  Or – if you did not yet read The Dazzling Darkness – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

My question for you cinephiles:
If The Dazzling Darkness was filmed – who should direct it, who could you imagine as actors?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂



10 thoughts on “The Dazzling Darkness by Paula Cappa

  1. Beautiful, beautiful cover (… said the snooty cover snob 😉 ). Definitely conveys the mystery behind the plotline!

    • This book comprises just a shade of horror, Ali. It is a mystery with psychological aspects and belief(s). The cover is awesome!

  2. “Paula Cappa is a master of the metaphysical mystery genre…an extraordinary and original storyteller of the first rank. Very highly recommended.

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