So I’m taking part in a blog tour for the release of Wes Markin’s debut novel ‘One Last Prayer for the Rays’ so this review is going to be a little different but hopefully you’ll enjoy it just as much.
Let’s start off with what I thought about the book itself, I am a huge fan of crime fiction and so when I happen to get a submission in that genre I am filled with a tentative excitement because I love the genre but that means I’m probably more unforgiving in regards to what I’m reading, which is a marked difference from the bulk of my other reviews where I aim to be honest but also where possible positive. But reading Markin’s debut novel I needn’t have worried because while he’s a new author he writes with a command that’s rare and needs to be appreciated.
One thing that attracts me to the genre and that One Last Prayer for the Rays has in spades is complexity and drive, I mean it’s not labyrinthian or overly complicated but it layers its plot very well and executes the storyline with precision. Another thing that I have to applaud the author for his controlled use of description, with stories about murder and violence and the darker elements of society you can rely to much on gore and shock value, but Markin makes the decision to use just enough description to let you know what’s going on and to fuel your imagination without belabouring the point and potentially robbing the scene of something vital and unique contributed by the reader.
As a writer myself I feel it can be rather hard to create characters that aren’t meant to be liked, you put life into them and don’t want them to be so polarising, but it’s necessary, you don’t just want 200+ pages of people exchanging bland pleasantries so it was good to see such complicated characters. In particular you want to feel sorry for and empathise with the family in the story because of the kidnapped child but they aren’t good people so the story ends up generating real and complicated emotions.
I also liked that the central villain was closely related to his victims although I do feel that he could have been expanded upon a little more, I like my villains with a little more substance but he serves his purpose nonetheless. In regards to the whole cast, Markin does flesh out his world really well, we see things from multiple points of view which helps to deliver the story in what I feel was a unique way.
To digress slightly from talking specifically about the book, I want to share something personal real quick. I first came to the crime fiction/thriller genre way back in 2009 when I read Dean Koontz’s book ‘Velocity’, that is a story of peaks and falls, and as the title suggests, it’s fast paced. It has ever so slightly coloured my impression of what the ideal crime fiction story should be, now I’m not saying it needs to be all action but their should be a constant drive and build and Markin manages that too, he manages to build this fast paced and engaging narrative that had be hooked from the first page.
So I’ve tried to talk a little about everything this book has to offer and if you want to read a robust UK based police procedural with plenty of drama, bloodshed and tension, and a strong central character then One Last Prayer for the Rays by Wes Markin might be the book for you, and so with all that I feel it more than earns a 4/5 and I look forward to reading more stories from the world of DCI Michael Yorke.
So that was the review, now in an effort to further promote the author and his book please find below more information.
About the AuthorWes Markin is a hyperactive English teacher, who loves writing crime fiction with a twist of the macabre.
Having released ‘One Last Prayer for the Rays’ he is now working on the second instalment of DCI Michael Yorke’s wild ride, ‘The Repenting Serpent’. He is also the author of ‘Defined’, a prequel to his DCI Yorke novels, which takes the reader back to his blood-soaked university days.
Born in 1978, Wes grew up in Manchester, UK. After graduating from Leeds University, he spent fifteen years as a teacher of English, and has taught in Thailand, Malaysia and China. Now as a teacher, writer, husband and father, he is currently living in Harrogate, UK.
About the Book
“DCI Michael Yorke faces his most harrowing case yet”
When 12-year-old Paul disappears from school, Yorke’s only clue is a pool of animal blood. Fearing the worst, he turns toward the most obvious suspect, recently released local murderer, Thomas Ray.
But as the snow in Salisbury worsens, Ray’s mutilated body is discovered, and Yorke is left with no choice but to journey into the sinister heart of a demented family that has plagued the community for generations. Can he save the boy? Or will the evil he discovers changes him forever?
‘One Last Prayer for the Rays’ introducing DCI Michael Yorke.
You can purchase the book for yourself by clicking one of these links:
First Published on: https://offtherecordblog.org