Thursday, 16 April 2020

Darkness Comes by John Lynch

Reviewer: Liza Perrat, author of the French Historical, The Bone Angel trilogy (Spirit of Lost Angels, Wolfsangel, Blood Rose Angel) and Australian 1970s series: The Silent Kookaburra and The Swooping Magpie.

What we thought: I don’t think I’m smart enough to understand everything about John Lynch’s clever novel, Darkness Comes.  

But, at the end of the day, I found this a highly entertaining read and thoroughly enjoyed this judgement-day-style trial of Ted Bailey’s life.

Ted is about as flawed a person as you could get –– womanizer, drug dealer, arms seller, murderer. Hardly a likeable character. But somehow the author evokes in us, sympathy for him. Perhaps we can all see some of ourselves in Ted? 

In the end, I found myself fighting in Ted’s corner as –– now on the verge of death –– each part of his life is exposed, and judged. I found myself wanting him to win, whatever that means. Judged worthy of Heaven, or sent to Hell? Or perhaps neither, if they don’t exist?

The vast cast of characters –– people who have featured in Ted Bailey’s life –– is not, as I first imagined, difficult to follow, as each one is transient (like most of the people we meet in life), making an almost ethereal appearance, and I just enjoyed each fleeting moment with the different characters. Which, so “they” say, we should do in real life. 

I felt the author was drawing parallels with all of us, through each character; that they represented a type of living individual to whom we can all relate.

I did wonder if Ted Bailey represented our human conscience. However that’s something for each reader to decide for him/herself.

Apart from being an extremely well-written novel, with its quirky storyline, very real, and flawed, characters, and easy-to-read, lyrical prose, I would highly recommend Darkness Comes as an entertaining, ingenious look at life and its many nuances.

You’ll like this if you: flawed characters and out-of-the-ordinary tales.

Avoid if you don’t like: political and religious content.

Genre: Contemporary Fiction.

Buy this book here

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