Don't you think there's a overwhelming sense of melancholy and sadness just by reading the title itself? I definitely think so, and what made this book not an easy read is it revolves around two girls - twelve-year-old Easter and her six-year-old younger sister, Ruby, and how they are on the run with their father.
After their mother's passing, they have been staying at their foster home. Their ex-minor league baseball player father, Wade Chesterfield, left them a few years back and they'd been living with their mother since the day their parents signed a paper on the Termination of Parental Rights. The legal document has stated that Wade would thereby relinquish his parental rights to Easter and Ruby. And from then on the girls never saw their father, again. It was then known that their father was arrested for DUI. And now he's appeared at their foster home and took them away in the middle of the night.
On the other end, Robert Pruitt, is a mercurial man nursing a years-old vendetta. He is, however, determined to find Wade and claim his due. He and Wade had known each other way back when they were both baseball players. Pruitt is also driven by money to track Wade from a triad boss who believes Wade had stolen a huge amount of money from him.
Brady Weller is the girls' guardian and he has a little history himself; he'd been a police officer and then a detective for almost twenty years. He has found his way being a guardian by trying to undo something that can never be undone. His current job is installing security systems but when he knew of the girls' disappearance, he began a search with the help of his ex-buddy whom he had worked with together during his days in the police force.
Narrated in alternating voices between Easter, Pruitt and Brady, This Dark Road to Mercy is an emotional read about the two sisters' struggles of living a new life and how fate has put their life in disarray.
What made this a compelling read is what seems to be an impulsive act from the start could spiral out of control into something so unbelievable and horrific. The three narrators are all binded into a complicated race of an unfortunate event which started out by greed initially. Wade is another interesting character whom I felt was a pity that his voice isn't included in this story. However, he plays a crucial role to this story so I suppose by leaving out his voice would probably add to the overall mysterious effect.
I enjoyed reading this story a lot. There are both tender and tense moments; and while I felt sympathy towards Easter and Ruby, there were also times that one has to admire their strength and courage at their age, especially Easter since she feels responsible for Ruby.
What also makes this story memorable is each role may differ from one another but they all have one thing in common, and that is having a second chance.