I’m delighted to be sharing my thoughts on After Dark, the stunning new novel by Dominic Nolan on my blog today.
A girl held captive her entire life
After a shocking discovery, the police must unravel a mystery that horrifies the nation.
A detective condemned as a criminal
Violently abducted while searching for a missing woman, D.S. Abigail Boone suffered retrograde amnesia – remembering nothing of her previous life. Defying the law to hunt those responsible, she now languishes behind bars.
A monster hiding in the shadows
In desperation, police turn to Boone – who fears a connection to the disappearance of a child three decades earlier…and a mysterious underworld figure whose name is spoken only in whispers.
Freed from prison, what will Boone sacrifice – and who must she become – to uncover the terrifying truth?
When I first met Abigail Boone in Dominic Nolan’s previous novel, Past Life, she was one of the most intriguing characters I’ve come across in crime fiction. The second book in the series, After Dark, follows on from events in the previous one, so I would recommend that you pick up the first one before diving into the second. Dominic Nolan writes these books so well, and the picturesque Kent landscape brings to life a haunting and atmospheric setting.
Abigail Boone is a former detective, but following a horrific accident during a previous investigation, she now has no memory of anything before that moment. She can’t even remember her own family. Abigail has had to rebuild her life and make the best out of a bad situation. This is what I think makes her character so unique. Abigail has had to start afresh, but you can see how painful this is for her, especially as she feels very little physical connection to her son and her former husband.
But aside from creating intriguing characters, the plot has a strong hook, and it opens with an explosive prologue which drew me into the story from the first page. In the opening chapters, a young girl has been found wandering. But what is shocking to the police and the doctors who examine her, is that she has no identification. She hasn’t developed as other children had, and there are strong suspicions that she has been kept in captivity since birth? But how has she managed to free herself? What sort of person would do something like this?
After the conclusion of the Past Life, Boone has since been in prison, but DI Barbara Brown seeks her help with the investigation as it may be linked to the case Abigail was previously involved in. But Abigail soon finds herself in even murkier waters as another woman seeks her help to find her son who went missing thirty years earlier, and it seems that the cases might be linked.
Boone is such a brilliant character who I am hoping is going to return in future books. I feel that there is a lot more to learn about her, and I’m interested to see how she will develop. I will certainly be returning to find out. After Dark is a gritty crime novel that will keep you invested in the characters and Dominic Nolan weaves together an utterly gripping plot.
Publication date: 5th March 2020
Print length: 448 pages
After Dark is available to buy: