Chosen by Farhana
Four novels, a short story selected for the Quick Reads 2020 series, and television rights sold before the first book was even published... You could say that bestselling author A.A. Dhand has been rather busy over the last few years. And he still works full time as a pharmacist.
Streets of Darkness is a gripping debut crime-thriller which follows Bradford-born-and-bred Detective Inspector Harry Virdee, who has recently been suspended from the police, as he fights to clear his name, solve a murder and stop an eruption of violence from engulfing the city. And he’s only got twenty-four hours to do it.
This is an atmospheric page-turner that is not only a satisfying crime story (pacey prose, grisly murders, dodgy identities, a race against time), but it also has a unique cast of characters.
At its heart, is Harry’s bond with his wife Saima, who is not only a formidable character in her own right, but their successful mixed-faith marriage (he is Sikh and she is Muslim) also gets them plenty of grief from other characters, who might still be a bit miffed about the wedding. (South Asian family politics, eh.) As the son of Punjabi Hindus who has described himself as agnostic and whose workplace shares connections with a women’s refuge centre, A.A. Dhand (Amit Dhand) is well aware of the tensions – and joys – that come with growing up and working in a city that’s as multicultural, diverse and rich in history as Bradford. And it’s this layer of detail in terms of Amit’s characters and their social and cultural backgrounds that is another of his novel’s many strengths.
So, if you’re looking for an explosive and absorbing crime-thriller (and series opener) with an intriguing cast of characters, both Desi and otherwise, then we at Desi Reads suggest that you check out Streets of Darkness.
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