David Mark brings Hull screaming and kicking to violent life in his debut novel The Dark Winter. A police procedural novel that is drawn with vivid characters and stark deacriptions.
Detective Sergeant McAvoy is a troubled character. The author eludes to past events that have left McAvoy out in the cold and untrusted by colleagues. Events that led to the dismissal of a senior officer. The air of mystery suurounding McAvoy is one of the most endearing things about the novel and Mark uses it to good effect.
McAvoy is no two dimensional character. A Scottish crofter's son, a country nan who has an exotic wife and cultured tastes. Trish Pharoah, NcAvoy's superior, is also exceptionally well drawn, she is very much larger than life and a likeable character who is more than a match for her hard drinking male colleagues.
David Mark has crafted an excellent debut that was a thoroughly enjoyable read. However, it's not without it's flaws. At times he was overly descriptive and on those few occasions it detracted rather than added to the novel. When his deacriptions were effective they were very effective. At times the dialogue was a little disjointed, stilted or didn't quite fit.
Despite these minor issues I read it quickly and with gusto and I won't heaitate to read the next novel by David Mark. Highly recommended.
Format: Hardcover, paperback, e-book