Top positive review
Day and Hammersmith are back
on 25 May 2014
In comparison to London, Grecian paints the small mining village as about as superstitious and ‘backward’ as you could imagine. A child and his parents are gone, feared dead yet many of the people in the village, including adults, fear the murders, if there have been any, were carried out by ‘Rawhead’ a fictional monster. It’s such a strange concept but perhaps more believable than I first though, possibly stemming from a human desire to avoid having to live up to the fact that people kill other people, especially children.
In The Yard plenty of people died but in The Black Country there are murders, near murders and accidental deaths all over the place. Once again I found myself being drawn in twenty different directions by many different characters and it’s the pace of the novel that pushes you through the mass of characters, not allowing you to dwell to heavily on any single one. I had issue with so many different intertwined murders and so many different murderers, too much was going on at times to be honest, but I do like the way Grecian writes – perhaps I just wish he kept it a little simpler.
I didn’t work out exactly what had happened in advance but some of it did become clear a little too early for my liking. Even from the first few pages I had a thought that X might have been the killer and it turned out to be true in part but then there were so many different killers it was a little like when will it all end? The grey eyed American and his story seemed like one character too far at times!
I’m being unkind though as I really did enjoy the novel and I’m already anticipating the next in the series. Grecian doesn’t shy away from gore and his creation of the suspicious, uncooperative village community is a such a clever place to put a police investigation. I’m not deterred, I just hope that maybe there’s less going off in different directions next time!