Black Wood (Banktoun #1) – S.J.I. Holliday
Something happened to Claire and Jo in Black Wood: something that left Claire paralysed and Jo with deep mental scars. But with Claire suffering memory loss and no evidence to be found, nobody believes Jo’s story. Twenty-three years later, a familiar face walks into the bookshop where Jo works, dredging up painful memories and rekindling her desire for vengeance. And at the same time, Sergeant Davie Gray is investigating a balaclava-clad man who is attacking women on a disused railway, shocking the sleepy village of Banktoun. But what is the connection between Jo’s visitor and the masked man? To catch the assailant, and to give Jo her long-awaited justice, Gray must unravel a tangled web of past secrets, broken friendship and tainted love. But can he crack the case before Jo finds herself with blood on her hands?
This is a story that seems to start slow, but this masks the growing complexity of the plot and the multiplicity of secrets in the past of each character. As the story develops, we discover more and more about the two girls at the heart of the story and the event in the woods that began it all.
This means that this is a less formulaic story than many other similar novels, and thus holds the interest right through to the end. The multiple threads of this story can get a bit tangled at times, but not enough to annoy or distract.
This is the first in a series and I will look out for the others.