#aww2021 · 2021 Reviews · contemporary fiction · suspense · thriller

Book Review: Deadman’s Track by Sarah Barrie

Title: Deadman’s Track

Author: Sarah Barrie

Published: July 8th 2020

Publisher: HQ Fiction – AU

Pages: 416

Genres:  Fiction, Contemporary, Suspense, Thriller

RRP: $29.99

Rating: 4 stars

Alone in the wilderness, they are picked off one by one … Gripping, standalone romantic thriller from an author at the top of her game, for readers of The Dark Lake and The Dry.

A tragic accident, a terrible crime, an unknown threat …

Scarred by a recent tragedy on Federation Peak, Tess Atherton is reluctant to guide a group of young hikers in the wild Tasmanian winter, but it seems safer than remaining amid the violence that threatens them in Hobart. Little does she know that she has brought the danger with her …

Detective Senior Sergeant Jared Denham is closing in on a serial killer, but someone doesn’t want him getting to the truth and the case is becoming personal. He already owes Tess his life, and wants to return the favour – but when it comes to enemies, Jared may be looking in the wrong direction.

Time is running out, and death is stalking them both …


Deadman’s Track offers a fantastic mix of suspense, thrills and chills with a gentle hint of romance. Sarah Barrie’s latest hit all the right notes for this reader.

Tess Atherton leads the way in Deadman’s Track, the latest contemporary suspense novel from Sarah Barrie. Tess is a local tour guide based in Tasmania. Haunted by a past tragedy that unfolded on Federation Peak, Tess is unsure about any future hikes to this dangerous location. But a group of young hikers manage to convince Tess to join them on a trek through the wilds of Tasmania. However, Tess and her crew are faced with plenty of challenges and perilous moments during their expedition. With a dangerous killer on the loose, fear and death surrounds Tess. Can Detective Senior Sergeant Jared Denham protect Tess and the community from this hunter?

Sarah Barrie is fast becoming Australia’s queen of suspense fiction. With Barrie’s unique Tasmanian spin on the suspense genre, Barrie’s fan base is quickly growing. Deadman’s Track is loosely tied to Blood Tree River and Devil’s Lair, two previous titles based in the same locale as this release. However, there is no essential need to read both these titles to appreciate all Deadman’s Track has to offer, it is an independent release.

I am pretty desperate to get to Tasmania again, having visited this truly magnificent part of our country over a decade ago now. But an interstate trip is not on the cards for me at the moment, so Deadman’s Track managed to fill my travel void. What a heart-pounding and tense journey Sarah Barrie’s 2020 release offered! The scene is immediately established and maintained for the duration of the novel. I could see, hear, breathe and smell the rich Tasmanian surrounds of Deadman’s Track. The raw beauty and danger of this unique locale is fully fleshed out by Sarah Barrie. The tense events of the story are enhanced by the rugged backdrop. The setting is a high point of the novel.

We are closely connected to tour guide Tess Atherton for this latest sojourn with Sarah Barrie. Tess was a character I embraced very quickly and it was a pleasure to follow her exciting journey. There are twists, turns, problems and binds that Tess must endure as the book follows its course. With crime, violence, threats and extreme danger all directed towards Tess, there is a strong feeling of wanting Tess to triumph and overcome these challenges. A little love injected into the story thanks to the presence of Jared, a detective trying to shut down a serial killer in the region adds to this tale. I enjoyed this minimal focus on romance in favour of the thriller elements of Deadman’s Track.

Overall, I really enjoyed Deadman’s Track which marks my third adventure with Sarah Barrie. I’m looking forward to another release from Sarah Barrie.

Deadman’s Track by Sarah Barrie was published on 8th July 2020 by HQ Fiction – AU. Details on how to purchase the book can be found here.

To learn more about the author of Deadman’s Track, Sarah Barrie, visit here.

Deadman’s Track is book #72 of the 2021 Australian Women Writers Challenge

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