A Dark Matter by Doug Johnstone

4.5 Stars from me!

Having read and loved Breakers, I simply had to read A Dark Matter!

Simply WOW! This is a story and a half and I was utterly invested in the from the very first line.

One thing is for sure, working in a funeral parlour isn’t for the faint hearted – in fact reading about it was a bit of a grim fascination too! Learning about embalming fluid being pumped in etc, gulp. Ew, I mean not literally gulp but you get the idea.

Alongside the dark tale of murder, mystery and oh so gutsy Skelf women runs a sucker punch of random emotional commentary. There were a few passages where the wind was literally knocked from my sails and I found myself evaluating and re-evaluating life and what is important. Doug Johnstone – hats off to you for sneaking that into a darkly comedic story.

There are some truly fabulous characters in A Dark Matter, some lovely outcomes and also some reminders that us humans can be deeply disappointing.

All in all, a great book, a clever whodunnit and a very gripping read.

Blurb: Meet the Skelfs: well-known Edinburgh family, proprietors of a long-established funeral-home business, and private investigators. When patriarch Jim dies, it’s left to his wife Dorothy, daughter Jenny and granddaughter Hannah to take charge of both businesses, kicking off an unexpected series of events. Dorothy discovers mysterious payments to another woman, suggesting that Jim wasn’t the husband she thought he was. Hannah’s best friend Mel has vanished from university, and the simple adultery case that Jenny takes on leads to something stranger and far darker than any of them could have imagined. As the women struggle to come to terms with their grief, and the demands of the business threaten to overwhelm them, secrets from the past emerge, which change everything. A compelling, tense and shocking thriller and a darkly funny and warm portrait of a family in turmoil, A Dark Matter introduces a cast of unforgettable characters, marking the start of an addictive new series.


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