Two O’clo ck Boy BY MARK HILL

BY MARK HILL (SPHERE) OUT 6 APRIL

Crime Scene - - POST MORTEM - By BARRY FORSHAW

Mark Hill has had pre­vi­ous ca­reers as a jour­nal­ist and as an award-win­ning pro­ducer for BBC Ra­dio 2. Of course, none of this nec­es­sar­ily qual­i­fies him to write the kind of storm­ing de­but that is now de rigueur for any fledg­ling crime writer wish­ing to make a mark, but that is ex­actly what he’s done in this am­bi­tious novel. Two O’clock Boy takes the clichés of the mod­ern po­lice pro­ce­dural and forges them into some­thing new and im­pres­sive.

The pro­tag­o­nist is morally am­bigu­ous cop­per DI Ray Drake – fa­mil­iar, yes, but this is an in­ter­est­ing vari­a­tion on the typ­i­cal crime fic­tion char­ac­ter. Prior to the nar­ra­tive, a chil­dren’s home, Lon­gacre, was razed to the ground. In the present a sin­is­ter fig­ure, the tit­u­lar “Two O’clock Boy”, ap­pears to be in the process of vi­o­lently elim­i­nat­ing all of those who were brought up in the home. It’s Drake’s job to track down this mur­derer, but there are com­pli­ca­tions aris­ing from the night of the fire which have mas­sive sig­nif­i­cance for the trou­bled de­tec­tive.

Those feel­ing we do not need an­other crime series set in the cap­i­tal (and who could blame them?) will very soon change their minds af­ter tack­ling this au­thor­i­ta­tively writ­ten and un­set­tling de­but novel. At a stroke, Mark Hill has joined the up­per ech­e­lons of Lon­don crime writ­ers.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.