In the Dark – Cara Hunter

HUNTER made a stunning crime-fiction debut with Close To Home, a thriller with a premise plucked from the headlines and a fresh, up-to-the-minute writing style.

She repeats that approach with the follow-up novel, a second page-turning case for DI Adam Fawley and his Oxford detectives.

The story moves at a relentless pace, with lots of unexpected (but expertly-prepared) twists, and enough characterisation and atmosphere to create a satisfying, well-rounded read.

In a typical urban street, behind the curtains of a typical terraced house, unspeakable horrors have been going on for goodness knows how long.

Building work on a house next door reveals a woman locked in the cellar, close to death, and suspicion obviously falls on the man who has been living in the house for years.

Nothing is what it seems, however, and the reader is kept guessing right to the end in this blend of police-procedural and psychological thriller.

David Knights