These Darkening Days
Benjamin Myers’ novel Turning Blue was a particularly grim, but compulsive, thriller set in North Yorkshire with all manner of nefarious misdeeds being committed among the rural muck. These Darkening Days is a follow-up of sorts with journalist Roddy Mace back at a local Yorkshire newspaper, this time in a town that has echoes of Hebden Bridge. Also returning is detective James Brindle who left the events described in Turning Blue under something of a cloud, but is now determined to prove himself once again. This time the pair – separately at first – must turn their attentions to a series of slashings that befall the town, with the national tabloid press, and angry mobs of locals, also keen on grabbing some of the action. It’s a well-paced yarn – bringing in elements of local myth, sex, drugs and folk music – and fans of Happy Valley will feel right at home here. The collective blood pressure of the Yorkshire tourist board must ratchet up several notches every time that Myers publishes a new novel, but for the rest of us this is gripping stuff.