Author: Ann Cleeves
Series: Vera Stanhope #9
Published by: Pan Macmillan on Sep. 8, 2020
Genres: Mystery/Thriller, Police Procedural
Source: Publishers Group Canada
Book Rating: 9/10
From Ann Cleeves—New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of the Vera and Shetland series, both of which are hit TV shows—comes the stunning new Vera Stanhope novel.
On the first snowy night of winter, Detective Inspector Vera Stanhope sets off for her home in the hills. Though the road is familiar, she misses a turning and soon becomes lost and disorientated. A car has skidded off the narrow road in front of her, its door left open, and she stops to help. There is no driver to be seen, so Vera assumes that the owner has gone to find help. But a cry calls her back: a toddler is strapped in the back seat.
Vera takes the child and, driving on, she arrives at a place she knows well. Brockburn is a large, grand house in the wilds of Northumberland, now a little shabby and run down. It’s also where her father, Hector, grew up. Inside, there’s a party in full swing: music, Christmas lights and laughter. Outside, unbeknownst to the revelers, a woman lies dead in the snow.
As the blizzard traps the group deep in the freezing Northumberland countryside, Brockburn begins to give up its secrets, and as Vera digs deeper into her investigation, she also begins to uncover her family’s complicated past.
Intricate, clever and engrossing!
In this splendid ninth installment in the Vera Stanhope series, The Darkest Evening, Cleeves has written an unpredictable, pacey, police procedural that sees quirky Det. Insp. Vera Stanhope immersed in a new murder investigation close to her estranged family home, Brockburn, when during a cold blustery evening she unexpectedly happens upon an abandoned car on the side of the road with a door left wide open and a toddler crying inside.
The writing is polished and precise. The characters are eccentric, secretive, and methodical. And the plot is a compelling tale full of twists, turns, red herrings, secrets, obsession, deduction, duplicity, manipulation, familial drama, and murder.
Overall, The Darkest Evening has an intriguing, well-developed storyline with exceptional character development, and is another fantastic addition to this shrewd, compulsive, well-loved series.
This book is available now.
Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.
Thank you to PGC Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.