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Blacklands

by Belinda Bauer

Disturbing parallels with the Moor Murders lurk as Steven bears the weight of the world on his young shoulders. From the chapter 1 I felt tingles running up my spine - the description of missing Uncle Billy, so similar to that of Keith Bennett - another murdered child as yet undiscovered. The distress caused by Billy’s loss is clearly visible, passed down from generation to generation. This easy but uncomfortable read will churn the emotions.

Extract

Steven didn't care. Chocolate bars were for children, and today he would become so much more than that. He might not know how sex or relationships worked, but by nightfall he hoped his family would be a whole thing, instead of this cracked, crumbling half-thing that left him nervous and sad.
Steven glanced round at his mother, Davey and Nan - all of them unaware of how he was about to change their lives.
He turned to go, but only got two steps before his mother said sharply, 'Wait for your brother.'
And so instead of digging up the body of a murdered boy, Steven had to wait for his brother and walk him to school.

Parallels

Darkside by Belinda Bauer
The Lost Boy by Duncan Staff
The Only Game by Reginald Hill
 

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