Friday 24 March 2023

Dark Waters by G R Halliday #DarkWaters @gr_halliday @vintagebooks #DIMonicaKennedy #BookReview


Annabelle speeds along a deserted mountain road in the Scottish Highlands, suddenly forced to swerve. The next thing she remembers is waking up in a dark, damp room.

Scott is camping in the Scottish woodlands when he hears a scream. He starts to run. Scott is never seen again.

DI Monica Kennedy has been called to her first Serious Crimes case in six months - a dismembered body has been found, abandoned in a dam. When another victim surfaces, Monica knows she is on the hunt for a ruthless killer; but her own dark past isn't far behind.

Dark Waters by G R Halliday was published in paperback in July 2021 by Vintage. I bought my copy form a well known online retailer! 

I read the first book in the DI Monica Kennedy series; From The Shadows, in September last year and absolutely devoured it. I was delighted to read this second in the series whilst I was on holiday recently. 

Don't you just love it when an author gets better and better?  I thought the first book in this series was outstanding, but this one is even better. Halliday really seems to have got into his stride here, and yes it is as dark as the first book, and yes there are some violent and nasty murders, but he writes with such flair and imagination. Nothing is overdone, everything is necessary to the plot and I found it to be the perfect crime fiction read. 

Once again, the reader finds themselves in the Highlands of Scotland, around Inverness. The desolate and isolation of the landscape is stunningly portrayed, and some of the people who live around there are decidedly creepy .... and quite scary to be honest. 

Annabelle and Scott are visitors to area. Travelling separately, they both become victims of heinous crimes. DI Monica Kennedy has taken time away from work, to try to recover from the horrors of her last case. When she receives a call to tell her that body parts have been found, she's back to work in an instant and also depending on her team to help out. 

Meanwhile, Annabelle is attempting to take a daring route through the mountains in her BMW, and Scott is camping out in the Highlands. Both of them are just out for good times, unaware that a terrible fate awaits them. 

It's not my job to talk more about the plot, why would I when the author does it so magnificently? However, I can tell you that this is a gripping, often terrifying story, populated with characters who can only be described as evil, alongside a Detective that I'm really growing to love. In this book, the author lets us know a little more about Monica, and her story in itself is intriguing.

This is top class crime fiction and I'm really looking forward to the next in the series.  Highly recommended. 

G.R. Halliday was born in Edinburgh and grew up near Stirling in Scotland. 

He spent his childhood obsessing over the unexplained mysteries his father investigated, which has proved excellent inspiration for From the Shadows. 

The book was shortlisted for the McIlvanney Debut Prize 2019. 

G.R. Halliday now lives in the rural Highlands outside of Inverness, where he is able to pursue his favourite pastimes of mountain climbing and swimming in the sea, before returning home to his band of semi-feral cats. 

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