We Are All the Same in the Dark

Now available in paperback

Barnes and Noble Thriller of the Month
Optioned by Sister Pictures for television
A People magazine pick
USA Today bestseller

Publishers Weekly starred review
#1 Bestseller on Audible

A Best Mystery of 2020 (Sun-Sentinel)
An Amazon Book of the Month

More media praise

The discovery of a girl abandoned by the side of the road threatens to unearth the long-buried secrets of a Texas town’s legendary cold case in this superb and atmospheric novel from the internationally bestselling author of Black-Eyed Susans.

It’s been a decade since Trumanell Branson disappeared from a farm, leaving only a bloody handprint behind. Her pretty face still hangs like a watchful queen on the posters on the walls of the town’s Baptist Church, the police station, and in the high school. They all promise the same thing: We will find you. Meanwhile, her brother, Wyatt, lives as a pariah in the desolation of the old family house, cleared of wrongdoing by the police but tried and sentenced in the court of public opinion and in a new crime documentary.

When Wyatt finds a lost girl dumped in a field of dandelions, making silent wishes, he believes she is a sign. The town’s youngest cop, Odette Tucker, believes she is a catalyst that will ignite a seething town still waiting for its own girl to come home. But Odette can’t look away. She shares a wound that won’t close with the mute, one-eyed mystery girl. She is haunted by her own history with the missing Tru.

Desperate to solve both cases, Odette fights to save a lost girl in the present and to dig up the shocking truth about a fateful night in the past—the night her friend disappeared, the night that inspired her to become a cop, the night that wrote them all a role in the town’s dark, violent mythology.

In this twisty psychological thriller, Julia Heaberlin paints unforgettable portraits of a woman and a girl who redefine perceptions of physical beauty and strength.


“Julia Heaberlin’s We Are All the Same in the Dark will give you goosebumps.”
—Popsugar, 57 of the best and most highly anticipated new thriller and mystery books out this year

“[Heaberlin] once again brilliantly captures the atmosphere and rough beauty of a strange and divided state.”
—Molly Odintz, Crimereads (Most Anticipated Books Summer 2020)

We Are All the Same in the Dark succeeds because Heaberlin is working on three levels—offering a fast-paced thriller centered around Angel and a slow-burning mystery focused on Trumanell, while never losing sight of her characters’ humanity.”
—Texas Monthly, Six All-Star Texas Book Festival Reads

“This chilling tale of buried sins is relentlessly unpredictable.”
—The Times (South Africa)

“[Julia] Heaberlin knows how to build to a truly shocking twist, how to break a reader’s heart and then begin mending it. ‘What’s coming is always unimaginable,’ Odette’s one-time therapist tells her, ‘and by that, I mean just that. It cannot be imagined. What’s coming never acts or behaves the way we think it will.’ That’s true for this novel, too.”
—The Dallas Morning News

“Tense, darkly atmospheric . . . Gracefully written, with characters that leap off the page and into your imagination, this takes your breath away with its sudden twists.”
—Daily Mail (U.K.)

“Elegant prose, headstrong heroines, and gorgeously wrought Texas atmosphere . . . a splendid ride with a jaw-dropper of a twist in the middle.”

“The author of Black-Eyed Susans returns with an elegantly written tale, set in a world where women are vulnerable and men are dangerous, the finger of suspicion pointing at them all.”
—Daily Express (UK)

“If you only read one thriller this year, let it be this one. Psychologically absorbing, original and atmospheric. I could not turn the pages fast enough.”
—Elin Hilderbrand, #1 New York Times bestselling author of 28 Summers

“Exceptional . . . After a devastating twist halfway through, the intense plot builds to an emotional finale. Heaberlin sensitively addresses issues of survival and vulnerability in this heart-wrenching gothic tale.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Equal parts luscious and thrilling, Heaberlin delivers characters from the heart in a darkly lyrical style as if she has fistfuls of it to spare. With that style and the Texas setting, she’s reminiscent of James Lee Burke . . . And she makes us care.”
—Becky Masterman, author of the Edgar Award Finalist Rage Against The Dying

“Julia Heaberlin’s We Are All the Same in the Dark has surged to the top as one of my favorite reads of the year. In Wyatt, Odette, and Angel, Heaberlin has created rich, multilayered characters who lead us into a darkly immersive exploration of loss and the search for the truth. I wanted to sit and savor her beautiful prose but the twisty plot and unexpected revelations propelled me through this spine-chilling novel. In We Are All the Same in the Dark, Heaberlin deftly unspools the threads of an awful crime and its far-reaching implications. The book is absolutely mesmerizing.”
—Heather Gudenkauf, New York Times bestselling author of The Weight of Silence

“I’m not sure I can put into words how much I loved this book: gorgeous writing, interesting characters, a unique setting, and an unsettling, surprising mystery. At one point, I actually gasped out loud from both the beauty of the writing and the shock of the story. We Are All the Same in the Dark has it all. Everyone needs to put this book on their to-be-read list right now! You can thank me later.”
—Amy Engel, bestselling author of The Familiar Dark

We Are All the Same in the Dark is a gripping, richly layered exploration of haunted souls in a haunted place. Julia Heaberlin’s complex and memorable characters propel a story that keeps you guessing at every turn.”
—Lou Berney, author of November Road

We Are All the Same in the Dark is an extraordinary book, with narration so precise and evocative that I breathed the roses and velvet air of its Texas setting. Heaberlin has an enviable gift for grounding the reader in the body, and the book’s two narrators, Odette and Angel, engage in a struggle for truth that is as much physical as intellectual. Six words to describe We Are All the Same in the Dark: Sharp. Compassionate. Bloody. Shocking. Profound. Triumphant.”
—Tanen Jones, author of The Better Liar

“A story so deftly told that it pulls you in and swallows you whole.”
—Taylor Stevens, New York Times bestselling author of Liars’ Legacy

“One of the best standalone mysteries I’ve read in a while . . . thrilling and complex, with richly imagined characters who will break your heart even as they confront the monsters, real and imagined, that hide in the dark.”
—Kathleen Kent, author of The Burn and the Edgar finalist The Dime

“Unsettling and atmospheric . . . tense and edgy . . . Julia Heaberlin holds you spellbound all the way to the emotional and devastating conclusion.”
—Lesley Kara, internationally bestselling author of The Rumor

“An intense, intelligent thrill-ride of a book—undoubtedly the one I will be recommending all year.”
—Elizabeth Haynes, New York Times bestselling author of Into the Darkest Corner

“Raw, stunning, both otherworldly and lapel-grabbing, this is the book to grab when you need something to grab you. You’ll be up all night and won’t regret it. Julia Heaberlin has written a tour de force.”
—Rene Denfeld, bestselling author of The Child Finder and The Butterfly Girl