The Black Country

09 Jan
Black Country

The second in the Murder Squad series by Alex Grecian [click for a review of the first one The Yard].  Interesting plot as the Detective Day and Sergeant Hammersmith are sent from London to investigate the disappearance of a father, mother and child in the deeply rural coal mining village in the heart of industrial Midlands.  The weather, superstitions and suspicions of the villagers their major barriers, as more and more of the village succumbs to a mystery illness and an owl flies into the room signalling someone will die, tensions and tempers mount.

The eminent Doctor Kingsley’s arrival with his ‘modern science’ quickly deduced that the villagers are being poisoned by the water.  But out in the forrest the half faced man is out for revenge, having tracked his prey from the darkest of the American Civil War prison camps.

As time and twists ensue, you wonder whether anyone will get out alive.

Again, a gripping read that did not disappoint, suitably dark and a nice mix of old superstitions and new science.  The only problem I had with this book [and often in others and some films] is how much one body can endure over a short period of time and still function dramatically.  A character over the course of 48 hours, is drugged with a sleeping draft, is involved with several physical fights, contracts cholera from the tainted water, spends hours poorly clothed in the wildest and coldest of blizzards and yet manages to fight onward to the bitter end.  I realise the human body can do extraordinary things at times but it was getting a but much.

Wonder if the author is considering a third in the series?


Posted by on January 9, 2014 in Books, Review



4 responses to “The Black Country

  1. freeasthewind

    January 9, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    I think I will get the first with the second. Sounds interesting


    • amgroves

      January 10, 2014 at 12:40 pm

      I did enjoy this series of Victorian era drama, set at a time when the world worked to such very different rules.

      I put them on my wish list on Amazon and when they were free/cheap for my kindle I snapped them up 🙂


  2. lilian1

    January 10, 2014 at 11:52 am

    Thanks for the review sounds for a very interesting read must say :yes: x


    • amgroves

      January 10, 2014 at 12:41 pm

      Yes it was, I could visualise how people were suspicious of ‘out-siders’ and their ways, and how what seem to be trivial mundane things can cause a superstitious frenzy – interesting indeed.



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