Way Down Dark
Spaceship turns pressure cooker
Release Date: 2 July
288 pages | Paperback/ ebook Author: JP Smythe Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
There’s not a lot of
humour in Way Down Dark. The only thing that even remotely counts as a gag only operates on a meta level – it’s not characters telling each other knock knock jokes, just the reader realising, “Oh, that’s why…!”
A post- apocalyptic YA novel, it’s set on a generational spaceship sent from a dying Earth which has degenerated into a violent pressure cooker of warring factions.
Extremely violent, hard- boiled stuff, it’s exciting and gripping too. And though grim, it’s not unrelenting or emotionally manipulative. It’s a tale of the human spirit and why it’s important to carry on fighting.
It also sails through the Bechdel test, with a cast of compelling, multilayered female characters making the men look utterly pointless. Dave Golder