Dark Thrill reviews: Every Last Fear by Alex Finlay

Every last fear by Alex Finley takes on a hot topic, a true-crime podcast. But, instead of riding the wave of a popular subject, it turns the crime into a riveting, original, and heartbreaking story.

This is a harsh and uncompromising book. It retraces the lives of not one but four victims. The Pine family, mother, father, daughter, and youngest son all die on a family holiday in Mexico. But this was not an ordinary outing. And this was no typical family. It is a miracle that the Pines were still a family at all. They could have easily fallen completely apart after their eldest son was accused and arrested for killing his girlfriend. They have been living under scrutiny ever since. 

In Serial style, a duo of journalists dedicated a podcast to proving the innocence of Danny Pine.

The middle son, Matt Pine, the only one that is not still consumed by their misfortunes, is trying to carve a life away from them at NYU. He doesn't know that his sister is obsessed with proving Danny's innocence or that their father can't let it go either. But when a special agent stands in front of him to tell him that now his whole family is gone, and he has no one left. It leaves him no choice. So as not to go crazy, he has to find out what happened to them.

The mystery is intricate, exciting, and well-paced, retold through different Pov, flashbacks, and real-time. It dedicates itself entirely to fleshing out every member of this family unit and knowing what will happen; it means that with every tidbit we are offered, the closer we get to them and the truth, the deeper their loss is felt. Seldom a crime story can merge a whodunnit so exquisitely with a dissection of a family in freefall. The Pines are held together by desperation, love, and dedication, and their fate will completely shatter you in the end. The hero of this story is the sister Marge, a talented investigator who could have gone on to serve the FBI and many other books were it not for her tragic ending. It sounds hopeless and depressing, and you may ask yourself what good will it do to follow an investigation that results in the death of those pursuing it. And that is the miracle of this book; against all odds, it manages to be a warm, beautiful, and a incredibly satisfying puzzle.