Drama enriched with a delicately balanced noir. The Rand family are career criminals trying to resume some form of normalcy following their sons' execution for having been convicted and sentenced to death for multiple murders. Terry, a world class 'creeper' returned home after a 5yr absence finds himself playing a key role within the family structure, one made more important following the events of the previous novel THE LAST KIND WORDS.
This feels more like an episodic installment into what looks like being a prolonged and hard knock family drama. Piccirilli focuses on broadening the Rand family by introducing a poorly grandfather and shady cousin. It isn't until Terry confronts his grandfather that we learn how deep the blood lines of crime run.
Like THE LAST KIND WORDS, Terry Rand, and to a lesser extent, sister Dale take centre stage. The brother/sister bond ever growing, making each interection between these two more meaninful and desperate (in terms of counciling against wrongs/truths). Seeing these two grow together is a highlight
Despite taking a little while for the plot to become apparent, THE LAST WHISPER IN THE DARK is entertaining and enjoyable. No particular chain of events pigeon holes the novels' intent, rather the characters themselves and their emotional reaction to circumstances they find themselves dictate proceedings.
THE LAST WHISPER IN THE DARK will appeal to fans of noir who like their crime more dramatised and less violent (that said Terry does cop his share of punishment, there's also an interesting hitman to sink your teeth into) than traditional novels sharing similar mob-like concepts (here the gangster element is on the peripheral).
My review of the first Terry Rand novel THE LAST KIND WORDS can be found here on Goodreads.com