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Darkness the Color of Snow

3.23  ·  Rating details ·  459 ratings  ·  103 reviews
A haunting, suspenseful, and dazzlingly written novel of secrets, corruption, tragedy, and vengeance from the author of Crazy Heart—the basis for the 2009 Academy Award-winning film. An electrifying crime drama and psychological thriller in which a young cop becomes the fulcrum of a community's grief and rage in the aftermath of a tragic accident.

"What happened is what hap
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published August 18th 2015 by William Morrow
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3.23  · 
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 ·  459 ratings  ·  103 reviews

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Apr 30, 2015 rated it liked it
My father used to say that people are like goats. What they can't eat, they shit on.

this is a decent smalltown crime novel that is much closer in tone to russell banks than to cormac mccarthy. although it is being compared to No Country for Old Men, it's definitely neither as violent nor as nihilistic as that book. it does involve crime, but crime on the very smallest scale - DUI, farm equipment theft, adolescent vandalism and arson - this is low-level stuff that has high impact on the community
James Thane
Oct 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime-fiction
Ronny Forbert is a rookie patrolmen on a small rural police force. On a cold winter night, he's parked in his ancient Crown Vic, running radar, when a vehicle comes down the road, speeding and with one headlight out. Ronny hits the lights and gives chase, only to have his heart sink when he recognizes the vehicle as it pulls to the side of the road.

The driver is Matt Laferiere. In the Jeep with Matt are three other members of his posse; all four are drunk and stoned. Ronny knows this crew all to
Will Byrnes
Mar 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I mean how much of any one guy belongs to himself and how much belongs to the team? I mean we’re all free individuals, only we’re not. We can’t just do what we want, I mean, look, I can drive a hundred and ten down the wrong side of the road because I’ve got free will, no? No. Something of me belongs to the world or the country or the town or something. I mean I have to do what’s best for it. I mean I have to. I’m not a hundred percent free. Add that part of myself that is free is that way bec
May 25, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
This review is based on an e-galley provided through the generosity of William Morrow & Company and Edelweiss. Darkness the Color of Snow is due to publish on August 18, 2015.

The Hook - The premise of the story. Please read my comments.

The Line”WHEN IT ALL COMES down, the human body ia a frail thing in world of things that are strong, fast and very unfrail.”

The SinkerIf Darkness the Color of Snow had been a debut I would have been more forgiving and rated this higher. The plot premise
Mar 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed the ride! Full of everything I look for in a book on a 5 star level. From the first nail biting chapter to the unbelievable and unexpected end, I was page turning like mad! Set in the winter with some "going back into the past", I felt, saw, heard, tasted everything the author intended for us in this endeavor.

Set in a town, I would hope to never live in or encounter. Full of morons with the exception of the police department. A young cop "rookie" (with an "if'y" past) becomes the talk
Kirk Smith
Jul 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
Actual rating: 3. This is a new book and I don't wish to discourage anyone from reading it. A perfectly good book written almost too simply for my taste. Not a writer or poet's flourish anywhere to be found. I don't have a single valid complaint. It held my attention, it just didn't thrill me.
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Oct 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
What really did happen the night of the accident?

Ronny kept asking himself over and over if it was his fault or if Matt caused his own death. Ronny and Matt had been friends throughout high school but now Ronny was a police officer and Matt was still the trouble-making kid he had always been.

DARKNESS THE COLOR OF SNOW takes the reader from present day back to Ronnie and Matt's high school days letting us in on their antics and how they fell apart and where they are today.

Jul 08, 2015 rated it did not like it
Glad I'm done with that one. What a waste! I really wanted to like it, but I just couldn't. It's dry, the characters are 2 - dimensional, and the ending? A total waste. I do have to admit that it lures you in. It's boring, but I still wanted to know how it ended. It was a jumble of flash-backs that seemed to be out of order mixed with a plot that was more political drama than the psychological thriller it claimed to be. The opening wasn't bad, and the town council meeting scene near the end was ...more
Nov 01, 2015 rated it did not like it
A run-of-the-mill mystery...not a page turner. Ronny Forbert is a young police officer in the small town of Lydell in upstate NY. When out on patrol one evening he pulls over a car for going 20 miles over the speed limit on a slippery night. When he gets to the car, he realizes that the occupants of the car are some of his 'friends' from high school. The leader of the group is Matt Laferiere , whose group, Ronny sorta belonged to in high school. When he asks Matt to get out of the car, there is ...more
Feb 13, 2017 rated it liked it
I'm somewhat conflicted about rating this book. It began strong and would have been a four star story but for some overly repetitive tropes. The young patrolman, Ronny Forbert, starts out as a sympathetic character but devolves right along with his fragile self esteem as the crooked, politically driven town council leader uses an unfortunate accident to his advantage and throws Ronny under the bus. The police chief, Gordy, is the most likable character in the story and is the moral center therei ...more
Jun 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
Full disclosure: I won an ARC of this book from GoodReads. This is the first novel by Thomas Cobb that I've read and it scared the crap outt of me. Yes. Had nightmares. Very well written, in fact couldn't put it down, a page turner til the very end. This book depicts how any one person's life and actions can affect so many others, especially in a small town. A true psych thriller with a stunning ending. Definitely a book I would recommend.
Apr 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Jeff Giles
Recommended to Cheri by: Will Byrnes

"It's terrible coffee, old and reheated, bitter as regret."
Christine Zibas
Feb 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The beauty of this mystery novel lies not in what happened, but in its aftermath of the event and the way in which the citizens of the small town color those events, based on their own self-interests and perceptions. The story opens on a rookie officer who's just about at the end of his shift when a car full of drunks comes speeding along the highway on a snowy road, where black ice is a factor.

When the officer stops the vehicle, he realizes it's a group of his estranged friends from high school
Jun 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I won this print and agreed to give it an honest review. This is a story of guilt, vengeance, and corruption in a small town. Ronny Forbert the son of a drunk carpenter, wanted to do more with his life, as a rookie officer, he was on patrol when he spotted a car with one head light moving too fast on the black ice. He hit the lights and gave chase, but it started the downfall of one tragic event after another. With his girlfriend's ex boyfriend drunk and behind the wheel, it was a recipe for dis ...more
Jun 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Small town, full of good ol boys and political pull. A good police chief, a young man makes a mistake and suffers for it. The human condition...greed and power, never goes away.
Didn't work for me. I liked it for, say, 80% of the book, but (view spoiler) ...more
Jan 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book doesn't have the highest ratings, but I thought it was amazing. It is a terribly sad story, really got me in the feelers. I will definitely be reading Crazy Heart, one of the author's other books.
Jun 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Ronny Forbert is the rookie cop in his home town police force. Raised by an alcoholic dad, Ronny did not have much guidance as a kid and in high school, had finally found a place to belong in the "wrong group," sliding rather easily into illegal activities, but not always liking it. He was salvaged from that road to nowhere good by the local police chief, who had offered the boys a chance to work off a charge of vandalism. The other boys believed Forbert had confessed too quickly and did not app ...more
Apr 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
How can an entire life unravel in a split second? Is it possible for a single moment in time to cast out a ripple effect that grows from a tiny shimmer to a tidal wave that crashes and destroys everything in its path? Could it have been stopped, contained? Was there ever any choice?

At the heart of Cobb’s book is young rookie police office Ronnie Forbert and one fateful night that changed his life forever. A routine traffic stop leaves Forbert’s old friend Matt Leferiere dead. Was it an acciden
Feb 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
On a cold winter night in a small town in New England, small town cop Ronny Forbert pulls over a car full of old acquaintances for speeding and driving with a broken headlight. The driver, Matt Laferiere, is intoxicated, belligerent, and fights with the officer, and during the struggle he falls and is struck and killed by a hit and run driver. So begins Darkness the Color of Snow, a terrific psychological drama set in the dead of winter in the cold of the town of Lydell (which I believe is a fic ...more
Jun 07, 2016 rated it it was ok
I won this book for free from the Goodreads Free Book Giveaway contest. I'm a bit mixed about this book. An internal struggle. Part of me really liked this book. I found the story pretty interesting and the evolution of people from childhood into adulthood strangely satisfying, especially since we've all at one time or another thought about friends we used to have and how the decisions that we've made formed our lives. This story is about that journey we all face and how sometimes you grow apart ...more
Nov 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, 2015
On a snowy night in a small town, a young police officer named Ronny Forbert pulls over a drunk driver named Matt Laferiere and attempts to make an arrest. In an ensuing physical struggle between Forbert and Laferiere, the drunk driver stumbles into the blacktop of a mountain road and is hit and killed by an oncoming car.

What begins as a clear case of an accidental hit and run in the first couple of pages spirals into a tale of corruption, lies, and small town politics. As the police department
Apr 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
Everyone's life is fragile. We think we have a plan, we follow our plans and try to move forward, and then situations change unexpectedly and, for the most part, in ways that are far beyond our control.

In small towns, (or small states) our paths intersect with the others who share our locale. Each of those others also have a plan, and sometimes our meeting is a collision that changes our paths, our plans and our lives. Politics, revenge, love, jealousy, anger, all have their place in thwarting
Jul 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
I found this to be a fascinating read. The writing is good and the plot is tight. During the set-up, I was prepared to criticize Mr. Cobb for his light development of the characters. After finishing the book, I spent the rest of the evening thinking about it, and I realized that he did not really have to put any more development of his own, because he used such strong archetypes. Without giving away plot points, the setting of the story is middle america a town in decay. Almost all of us have sp ...more
Jul 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads, crime
Won this from the Goodreads First Reads program. I'd never read Thomas Cobb before (though I enjoyed the movie version of his novel Crazy Heart), but now that I have, I'll be looking for more. This is barely a crime novel (a DUI and the theft of some farming equipment is about as serious as it gets), but Cobb hooks you through his characters and his version/description of small town & rural life is spot on. Even though the novel is set in Vermont and I live in the Midwest, I felt like I knew ...more
Jul 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
I won an ARC. Out on his regular patrol Ronald stops a group of wild kids for speeding/drinking, etc on a cold night. The driver happens to be someone he had been friends with during his early years. Ronald growed up and made something of his self and become a cop, but his friend just as wild now as in the past. He has no respect for Ronald now and don't get out of the jeep when told to. When he starts to handcuff him a scuffle starts.

Ronald is given 5 days with no pay, after the horrible accid
Sep 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is an enjoyable, "small" crime fiction novel that I best describe as being a book where the good people try to do good things and the right things while those of lesser qualities try to prevent them from doing so mainly by being themselves.

The characters all know each other and for years. The story opens with an accidental death that takes on different meanings depending upon the perspectives of others and at times, for the use of different characters and their selfish motives.

Dec 11, 2015 rated it it was ok
Honestly, this book was boring. Written like a screenplay, little character development except for maybe the police chief. I still don't know what the title means, even after finishing. Read it for a book club- not a fan.
I did like the idea of the story- small town, everybody knows everybody and their business.
Oct 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book has believable, richly developed characters and an engaging plot about the consequences of a tragic incident in a rural, economically depressed town in NY near the Vermont border. The writing brought to mind some of the books and stories by Russell Banks. I didn't find this to be as much crime fiction as a compelling story of the impact of a single event on an entire community.
Madison Goodwin
May 27, 2016 rated it did not like it
This book is advertised as a suspenseful thriller when the story is very cut and dry. Events happen in the beginning of the book that are centered throughout the entire novel as the characters search for "what really happened."

It's very disappointing to read an entire novel to find out that what really happened was what was spelled out in the first 20 pages.
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