Currently Reading Podcast

Season 6, Episode 2 features a wonderful review of Dark August. To listen go to CurrentlyReadingPodcast.

The best Canadian thrillers about messy characters haunted by their messy pasts

Check out a list of some of my favourite Canadian thriller writers. View the full list on

Success is Connecting (PostMedia Network)

“Writing, for me, is always the answer. It grounds me. It brings me back to myself.” Excerpt from an interview by Elizabeth Kelly. Full interview.

The Next Chapter’s Mystery Panel Recommends Books to Read This Summer (CBC)

“This is a terrific book–one you want to pack for a weekend away.” Margaret Cannon. Full article.

11 New Books We Recommend (New York Times Editors’ Choice)

“…moody and riveting mystery…” Full review.

The Art of Unraveling (The Big Thrill)

In this interview with The Big Thrill, Tallo talks more about what inspired POISON LILIES… Full interview.

New York Times Book Review

“It’s an exhilarating and frenzied ride of violence and betrayal; when I finished, I just wanted to read another Gus Monet novel.” Full review.

Library Journal Review

“The follow-up to Dark August seamlessly weaves in threads from the first book and adeptly takes a century-old crime into the present.” Full article.

11 Summer Reading Suggestions from Ottawa at Home’s Editor-in-Chief

A list of summer reading suggestions from Mary Taggart. Full article.

Jessicamap Book Review

“Tallo certainly knows how to tell a story and I was hooked from start to finish. I loved being back with Gus for another case and our new cast of characters are just as memorable!” Full review

CBC’s Summer Reading List by Ottawa Authors

“…emotional resonance and also a lot of thrills.” Full article.

The Globe 100: Our Favourite Books of 2020

“One of the best debut novels of the decade … Brilliant characters and a stellar plot make Tallo a talent who should be on everyone’s list. Full article.

CBC’s The Next Chapter: Mystery Book Panel

“The book is absolutely breathtaking. I couldn’t put this book down.” Full radio show.

New York Times Editors’ Choice

“Augusta (Gus) Monet returns to her Ontario hometown to claim her inheritance, only to lose herself in the same murder case that once bedeviled her mother.” Full article.

New York Times Book Review

“August (Gus) Monet is smart and resourceful…it’s easy to get caught up in this story.” Full review.

Toronto Star Book Review

“Gus inherited her mum’s sleuthing genius and she sets out, against all odds, to nail the bad guys of the piece in a story that is never short on tumult.” Full Review.

Six Thrillers to Entertain You Through the Dog Days of Summer (Globe and Mail)

“a terrific debut … Tallo’s excellent characters and solid pacing keep the story moving as readers whip across a Southern Ontario ghost town.” Full article.

Publishing in a Pandemic (Ottawa Citizen)

“A taut thriller about small-town corruption that finds 20-year-old Augusta ‘Gus’ Monet returning to her hometown of Ottawa and revisiting the ghosts of the past.” Full article.

Miramichi Reader Book Review

“Tallo’s prose is polished and elegant and shimmers with imaginative detail. The story is fast-paced and unrelentingly entertaining.” Full review.

A Tale of Murder, Betrayal and Revenge (Pamela Kramer)

“Once you’ve started reading, you will find it difficult to stop. The manner in which Tallo puts all the pieces together and tantalizes us with clues is clever and masterful.” Full review.

Three Canadian Books to Help With the Dog Days of Summer (Postmedia)

“Screenwriter turned novelist Katie Tallo has an instant hit on her hands with this summer thriller.” Full article.

Criminal Element Book Review

“…a complex, character-driven thriller … A fine debut from novelist Katie Tallo, marking her as someone to watch for in the future.” Full review.

Shelf Awareness Book Review

Dark August is part murder mystery, part big fraud in a small town, and all engrossing … a finely crafted debut novel with an emphatic reminder that people who get knocked down can always get back up.” Full review.

July Mystery Roundup (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)

“At once brutal and beautiful, “Dark August” offers multiple pleasures and heralds the arrival of an author of great promise.” Full review.

Apple Books Review (Best Books of July)

“Tallo’s visually descriptive style makes every scene of her dark mystery unfold like a perfectly crafted movie. We were pretty much biting our lip waiting to find out if Gus would crack the case or if powerful, malevolent forces standing in her way would prevail.” Full review.

Summer Books Preview: 34 of the Season’s Hottest Reads (Globe and Mail)

“In this page-turning debut, a young woman, Gus, returns to her hometown and starts to follow the clues that link the death of her mother – a disgraced police officer – with her mom’s final cold case.” Full list.

July Book Panel (CBC Radio’s All in a Day)

“Nothing deters Gus. She’s just a wonderful character … it’s a cinematic read, there’s definitely danger and thrill en route.” — Ann Archer, Ottawa Public Library Full review.

Loneliness, Lies and a Dog Named Levi (The Big Thrill)

In this exclusive interview, Tallo chats with The Big Thrill about the empowerment of the poignant Gus Monet, how her dog Levi became a central character, and her debut novel’s message. Full interview.

Entertaining Novels to Read This Summer (The Mississauga News)

“… definitely falls into that “difficult to put down” category, but I did put it down, begrudgingly, in order to make it last longer … Dark August isn’t just an exceptional mystery, it is also a very good dog story. Doesn’t get much better than that. Highly recommended!” Full review.

10 Crime Novels About Returning Home (Crime Reads)

“I’m also a writer of dark thrillers which makes my oh-so-normal and kind of uneventful hometown experience somewhat fertile ground for the oh-so-macabre and kind of twisted stories that I’m fond of writing.” — Author, Katie Tallo. Full article.

21 New Mystery and Thrillers You Won’t Stop Thinking About This Summer (Parade)

“In this epic mystery-thriller combo, no one is to be trusted as Gus uncovers long-buried secrets all packed with small town corruption and murder.” Full article.

Girly Book Club Book Review

“It has all the makings of a fast-paced, thrilling “who done it” and I highly recommend Hollywood make this! … one of the best mysteries I have read in a long time.” — Caitlin Winkler. Full review.

Cloud Lake Literary Book Review

“DARK AUGUST is an exquisite debut that is sure to have readers holding their breath as the plot develops and more twists are unveiled.” — Kaylie Seed (@kaylieseed on Instagram) Full review.

Red Carpet Crash Book Review

“A solid thriller with a determined strong female character in Gus. Twists and turns and flashbacks keep the reader engaged throughout the story, right up to the climatic reveal.” Full review.

Jessicamap Book Review

“This year just keeps hitting us with great debut novels! DARK AUGUST by Katie Tallo is a new thriller/suspense and I already can’t wait to see what she’ll release next.” Full review.

The Month’s Best Debuts: 8 Debut Novels You Should Read This June (Crime Reads)

“Tallo’s debut heralds the entrance of a promising new voice to noir and thriller writing.” Full article.

Edinburgh News Book Review

“… Katie Tallo has turned her hand to a very good thriller/mystery … Young Augusta (Gus) Monet … stumbles on her disgraced police-detective mother’s files of an unsolved crime and is gradually drawn into its multi-tentacled and dangerous depths. Gus is flawed but sympathetic and feisty, and you grow to root for her … and there is a most wonderful dog, too!”- Bridget from Books on Beechwood. Full review.

Booklist Starred Review

“This truly inspired piece of writing, reminiscent of William Faulkner … a mystery of epic proportions … Highly recommended for mystery fans, as well as devotees of Margaret Atwood and Alice Munro.” – Jane Murphy. Full review.

Publishers Weekly Review

“Screenwriter and director Tallo makes her debut with an engrossing mystery … Distinctive characters and an intricate plot will keep readers turning the pages. Tallo is off to a promising start.” Full review.

Peter Heller, NYT bestselling author of The Dog Stars

“Augusta ‘Gus’ Monet is destined to become our next beloved investigator … What elevates Tallo’s galloping story is the freshness of the writing, and the deep explorations of character. An imaginative thriller –as much about family, loss, greed, and a young woman’s attempt to find a place in the world, as it is about solving a long buried mystery.”

Lisa Gabriele, international bestselling author of The Winters

Dark August is a tightly-paced cauldron of a thriller about small town corruption, murder and mayhem, in the vein of Sharp Objects and All The Missing Girls. A macabre and confidently twisty debut.”

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