Books

by Val McDermid
Harper, January 2009, $24.99

The personal and political effects of Scotland's 1980s coal mining strike underlie the gripping and intense A Darker Domain. Using as a starting point the union busting of Margaret Thatcher that plunged hardworking miners into poverty, Scottish author Val McDermid's 22nd novel is a strong, suspenseful psychological thriller about a betrayal, a community abandoned by a favorite son, and the struggle between parents and their children.

Scottish Dectective Inspector Karen Pirie's cold case unit is enmeshed with two crimes from the mid-1980s. In 1985, Mick Prentice, a respected, strongly pro-union member, left his wife and child in Fife to join a group of strikebreakers. Now some 23 years later, his grown daughter has filed a missing persons report on him. At the same time, clues surface in Italy relating to the death of a Scottish heiress killed during the 1985 botched kidnapping of her and her baby, who disappeared.

Pulling together these disparate cases with a skillful aplomb reminiscent of her masterpiece, A Place of Execution, McDermid takes us into the heart of a mining community where unity meant survival. A Darker Domain is a personal story for McDermid who grew up in the Fife area and whose family were coal miners.

Oline H. Cogdill

The personal and political effects of Scotland's 1980s coal mining strike underlie the gripping and intense A Darker Domain. Using as a starting point the union busting of Margaret Thatcher that plunged hardworking miners into poverty, Scottish author Val McDermid's 22nd novel is a strong, suspenseful psychological thriller about a betrayal, a community abandoned by a favorite son, and the struggle between parents and their children.

Scottish Dectective Inspector Karen Pirie's cold case unit is enmeshed with two crimes from the mid-1980s. In 1985, Mick Prentice, a respected, strongly pro-union member, left his wife and child in Fife to join a group of strikebreakers. Now some 23 years later, his grown daughter has filed a missing persons report on him. At the same time, clues surface in Italy relating to the death of a Scottish heiress killed during the 1985 botched kidnapping of her and her baby, who disappeared.

Pulling together these disparate cases with a skillful aplomb reminiscent of her masterpiece, A Place of Execution, McDermid takes us into the heart of a mining community where unity meant survival. A Darker Domain is a personal story for McDermid who grew up in the Fife area and whose family were coal miners.

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by Val McDermid
Harper, January 2009, $24.99

McDermid
January 2009
a-darker-domain
24.99
Harper

 

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