Lockdown hasn’t had many plus points has it? Like many others reading books and watching telly for hours on end stopped me from going completely insane . Revisiting old favourites and discovering new characters and taking a punt on authors I’ve never read before Has been a joy.
One of those authors is Anne Cleeves creator of the critically acclaimed Shetland books , the Mathew Venn series and of course, the living legend Vera .
The darkest evening is the ninth book in the series and it begins with Vera trying to get home during an epic snowstorm . After spotting an abandoned car at the side of the road and finding a young toddler inside with his mother nowehere to be seen Vera takes him to Broxburn. A run down mansion where her father grew up. When the body of a young woman is found nearby Vera knows she's got rather more than a missing persons case on her hands and along with it all sorts of secrets come tumbling out, some of them involving Vera's family.
That's about as much as I can tell you without having to issue a spoiler warning, but what I can tell you is that there are definitely traces of Agatha Christie in the darkest evening, every time you think you know where it's going it goes in another direction all together.
It's great fun if like me you enjoy trying to work out who did it. I almost always get it wrong and I'm pleased to report I got it wrong this time as well.
The thing I liked most about the darkest evening is that we get to see Vera interacting with her family, given that she never mentions them much it's nice to see a little glimpse into the private side of Vera.
Like all good detectives Vera isn't afraid of getting herself into a little danger to help snare a killer even if it means almost becoming a murder statistic herself.
This is the ninth book in the series and it seems to be as good a place to start as any of the others. If you've seen the Vera TV show I'll garuntee you'll love the books. Hopefully it won't be too long before we get to see this one on screen.
Verdict : Cracker