Darkness and Light – Book Review
Late dawns and early dusks usually herald the return of my crime spree. I saunter in to every book shop on my way to and from work and look desolately at the dark covers. Read it. Read it. Read it. McDermid, Connelly, Mankell, Nesbo. It’s a season for devouring the dark imaginings and delighting in the twists and turns.
So naturally when I came across an author I hadn’t read before I made short work of it. John Harvey has a few series on the go. Careful characters with enough idiosyncratic behaviour to appeal, and not too much so you won’t get bored.
Jump straight into the third Frank Elder book, a retired detective who lives a semi hermit like existence, brought back to the city as a favour to his ex-wife. A friend’s sister is missing. She hasn’t been home in a while. And when she returns, she’s been dead a while. Gruesome? Well sort of. I really enjoy John Harvey’s style, it’s a little old school, like his characters. Solutions come about from leg work and people, not just forensics and microscopic break throughs. There are unlikely twists that don’t wait till the end of the story to spin you in another direction, and of course a damn decent bad guy.
No crime fiction is for the faint hearted. This is not a warm fuzzy story, and it hints of darker, earlier tales; but it’s not as violent and as graphic as others. It makes for a perfect fireside read.
Book Review by Jacq Ellem