‘The Sky Turned Black’ by John Steele
Also on the tour today, B For Bookreview
HIS BIGGEST CASE YET. BUT IT COULD BE HIS LAST…
NYPD officer Callum Burke is on a routine drugs raid when he bursts in on a scene of unimaginable horror – and two killers about to get away.
The men are caught but they won’t talk. All the cops know is that they’re Russian and extremely dangerous which means this could be the start of a savage new gang war.
Callum Burke is tasked with finding out what is going on. It’s Manhattan in 1997 and the city is being cleaned up. The pressure is on.
But when Callum discovers there might be more to the Russian involvement than just criminal gangs, he finds himself in deeper trouble than he’s ever known…
‘Hard and intriguing. Callum Burke is a cop on the edge’ David Albertyn
‘The Sky Turned Black will make your head spin’ T. J. English
‘The Sky Turned Black is a crime saga that combines gritty detail with a global scope’ Thomas Mullen
John Steele’s last novel, 2021’s ‘Rat Island’ was a heavyweight tome which attracted praise from the some heavyweight names (Tony Parson, Claire McGowan) and drew comparisons with the undisputed heavyweight of the American crime saga, Don Winslow. So, pretty good company then.
My own review, described the first in this series of novels as, “a tautly atmospheric portrait of New York at that tipping point in its history as it moved from pimps and hoes, No-Go Zone to the sanitised tourist trap it was to become.”
Here, Steele – and what a great name for a writer of hard-boiled detective fiction that is – picks up the character in 1997 as that move towards tourist friendly city is underway.
The arrival of the post-Perestroika Russians adds a further element to the sprawling city which Steele is working to render like a 3D map of the evolution of New York as well as adding a contemporary resonance.
As well as working picture of a city becoming aware of its new identity, Steele writes action with an adrenaline-fuelled punch.
If you like your thrillers sophisticated, thoroughly rooted in the real world and sprinkled with the verisimilitude of a period piece, then ‘The Sky Turned Black’ will brighten your day.
UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Turned-Black-Callum-Burke-NYPD-ebook/dp/B09T6VFQM1/
US – https://www.amazon.com/Turned-Black-Callum-Burke-NYPD-ebook/dp/B09T6VFQM1/
Author Bio –
John Steele was born and raised in Belfast, Northern Ireland. In 1995, at the age of twenty-two he travelled to the United States and has since lived and worked on three continents, including a thirteen-year spell in Japan. Among past jobs he has been a drummer in a rock band, an illustrator, a truck driver and a teacher of English. He now lives in England with his wife and daughter.
He began writing short stories, selling them to North American magazines and fiction digests. He has published four previous novels: Ravenhill, Seven Skins, Dry River and Rat Island, the first of which was longlisted for a CWA Debut Dagger award. John’s books have been described as ‘remarkable’ by the Sunday Times, ‘dark and thrilling’ by Claire McGowan, and ‘spectacular’ by Tony Parsons. The Irish Independent called John ‘a writer of huge promise’ and Gary Donnelly appointed him ‘the undisputed champion of the modern metropolitan thriller’.
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