Posts Tagged ‘Mark Hill’


Paperback Published: 6 April 2017
Reviewed: 20 November 2016

4.5 out of 5 stars

Copy supplied by Sphere in return for an honest review




One night changed their lives
Thirty years ago, the Longacre Children’s Home stood on a London street where once-grand Victorian homes lay derelict. There its children lived in terror of Gordon Tallis, the home’s manager.

Cries in the fire and smoke
Then Connor Laird arrived: a frighteningly intense boy who quickly became Tallis’ favourite criminal helper. Soon after, destruction befell the Longacre, and the facts of that night have lain buried . . . until today.

A truth both must hide
Now, a mysterious figure, the Two O’Clock Boy, is killing all who grew up there, one by one. DI Ray Drake will do whatever it take to stop the murders – but he will go even further to cover up the truth.

Discover the gripping, twist-filled start to a fantastic new London-set crime thriller series starring morally corrupt DI Ray Drake – the perfect new addiction for fans of Luther.

My Thoughts & Review:

When I started this book I was grabbed by the story, it was interesting and the explosive first pages really set the tone for the rest of the book.   The description promised mystery, intrigue and murder but this turned out to be so much more,  a brilliantly compelling read that was almost impossible to put down.

Skilfully, Mark Hill weaves together numerous threads to bring the reader an enticing story that tangles along the way with some dangerous and devastating events.  The reader is plunged into the chaotic and desolate Longacre Children’s Home in the 1980s, the details of the goings on there are harrowing reading at times, and the impacts of the abuse towards the children resident there are far reaching, so much so that some are still living in the shadows of their torment.  The tormentor in the home ruled with an iron fist, somewhat drunkenly and never missed an opportunity to exploit his charges for his criminal activities.

The recent promotion of DS Flick Crowley should be a cause for celebration, but for this character she is constantly checking herself, ensuring she is not reading subtle context into remarks of her mentor DI Ray Drake and superiors.  Determined not to show signs she is struggling under pressure or not up to the challenge of leading a murder investigation, Flick looks for connections between the victims not realising that someone is working hard to cover up the evidence she needs to solve the case.

Rich with lies and secrets, this is a well plotted novel, it draws the reader in and builds a level of tension that makes this an incredibly fast paced read.  The characters in this are very well written, each one of them is damaged in their own way, be it Elliot and his time at Longacre which turned him into an alcohol abusing criminal, Flick Crowley with her strained relationship with her father, or indeed Ray Drake who recently lost his wife to cancer and has a troubled relationship with his daughter.  Each character is a victim in their own way, and through clever and insightful writing Mark Hill makes the reader feel empathy towards their plights.  The strong characters really bring this book alive, there are elements of the personalities that readers will connect with,  and will understand but will ultimately feel driven to read on to discover what happens to that character(s). 

The writing itself is impressive, and it is hard to believe that this is a debut novel.  It’s chilling, it’s compelling and it’s brilliant.  The deception and danger in this book are so well constructed that the reader may guess what happens from time to time, but Hill ensures that they are kept on their toes with some of the unexpected twists he throws into the story.

Now I just need the details for the next outing for DI Drake and DS Crowley…….any hints when we can expect book two Mr Hill!?


About the Author:

Courtesy of http://markhillauthor.com/about

I’ve been a journalist and an award-winning music radio producer. I worked for about five minutes in PR.

But I write now, which is just as well, because I love writing. It’s my dream job.

It’s nice to see you here, thanks for coming, but you can also find me on social media.

I’m on Facebook right here. If you like The Two O’Clock Boy, if you’re interested in keeping up to date with news, events and giveaways – everything Drake and Crowley, basically – then head to my author page and, you know, ‘like’ the page.

Or if Twitter’s your thing then you can find me there, too, @markhillwriter. I tweet about all sorts: writing, books, movies, games, custard, otters, all the stuff you like. So give me a follow.

But wait, before you do any of that, make sure you buy my book.


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