In the chilling new crime novel from award-winning author Liam McIlvanney, a serial killer stalks the streets of Glasgow and DI McCormack follows a trail of devastating secrets to uncover the truth…
A city torn apart. Glasgow, 1969. In the grip of the worst winter for years, the city is brought to its knees by a killer whose name fills the streets with fear: the Quaker. He takes his next victim – the third woman from the same nightclub – and dumps her in the street like rubbish.
A detective with everything to prove. The police are left chasing a ghost, with no new leads and no hope of catching their prey. DI McCormack, a talented young detective from the Highlands, is ordered to join the investigation. But his arrival is met with anger from a group of officers on the brink of despair. Soon he learns just how difficult life can be for an outsider.
A killer who hunts in the shadows. When another woman is found murdered in a tenement flat, it’s clear the case is by no means over. From ruined backstreets to the dark heart of Glasgow, McCormack follows a trail of secrets that will change the city – and his life – forever…
Atmospheric and authentic are the best adjectives to describe this story. The menacing ethos of 1960s Glasgow is apparent on every page and is compelling.
The characters’ prejudices and secrets vividly depicted make them realistic. The sinister undercurrent as people wonder when ‘The Quaker’will kill again makes for a tense thriller. The murders are described in painstaking detail but not overly graphic, just enough to inform the plot and allow the reader to glimpse the horror of the crime.
Police procedural is the mainstay of the plot, but the suspense and supernatural impressions from the Quaker’s victims add a twist that makes this even more chilling to read. McCormack is a complex detective, a loner he is dedicated to his job at the cost of his relationships.
The ending draws from all the clues laid earlier in the plot, it is convincing and clever and with a final sting in its tail.
‘The Quaker’ is not an easy read, the dialogue and complexity of Glasgow society at this time needs to be understood to get the most of this story.
I received a copy of this book from Harper Collins – Harper Fiction via NetGalley in return for an honest review.