Chasing the Dark

  • Author
    Sam Hepburn
  • Publisher
    The Chicken House
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​You could hardly get a grittier or more grim opening for a YA novel than the protagonist lying in bed and reliving in graphic detail the moment his mum was killed in a car crash – but there’s nothing gratuitous about this tense and pacey thriller from new voice Sam Hepburn. The plot is densely and carefully constructed, weaving in contemporary concerns such as human trafficking and urban gang violence, as well as threads of more traditional crime fiction – jewel thieves, Sixties starlets, mysterious disappearances and mistaken identities – not to mention the addition of a cruel aunt who is considerably less than happy to be forced to take responsibility for her dead sister’s child. All in all, this is a book that is definitely more than the sum of its influences, and definitely one to recommend to KS3 boys and girls, including reluctant readers.