From the very first page of Darktown, I was stunned, mesmerized, and instantly a huge fan of Tom Mullen. Beyond the history and the thrilling mystery, the book's soul lies in the burgeoning partnership (and dare I say friendship) at the center of the book. It's a reminder of the ties that cut across race in America. There is nothing I love more in a book than hope.
Extremely evocative in bringing the pre-civil rights South to life
Fine Southern storytelling meets hard-boiled crime in a tale that connects an overlooked chapter of history to our own continuing struggles with race today
Mullen is skilled at bringing the past to life, both socially and visually . . . fans of well-written literary thrillers will want this expert example
I LOVED Darktown. It just grabbed and dragged me into such a brutal and little-known past. An ambitious and original tale of murder where the heat and brutality rise off the page in a cruel and divided city
This page-turner reads like the best of James Ellroy
Mullen blends the classic ingredients of det-fic noir with a well-researched and searing portrayal of pre-civil rights racial division. Magnificent and shocking
Gripping . . . melds an intense plot with fully realised characters.
A novel that couldn't be timelier.
One incendiary image ignites the next in this highly combustible procedural, set in the city's rigidly segregated black neighborhoods during the pre-civil-rights era and written with a ferocious passion that'll knock the wind out of you.
Mullen is a wonderful architect of intersecting plotlines and unexpected answers . . . Compelling works of fiction such as Mullen's walk a fine line between art that reminds us of horrors past and art that trades on them with pieces too unfinished to play with
A fine, unflinching example of the increasingly widespread use of crime fiction to explore social issues; its plot is gripping
A hard-boiled masterpiece . . brutal, harrowing, full of anger yet atmospheric, compelling and layered with hope. A hard as nails gem.
A gritty, beautifully written police procedural doubling as a searing indictment of the racial tensions that then and now bedevil American society
Darktown is also immensely successful as both a thriller and a historical novel
This socially resonant and morally complex literary thriller is a vivid, smart, intricately plotted saga exploring race, law enforcement, and the uneven scales of justice. It is a book to make you think.
A terrific story that raises issues that have not vanished.
Fascinating, grim and unsettling, this is a story of violent and ingrained racism, political corruption, conspiracy and almost unbearable psychological pressure
With a masterly sense of place, it shines a light on an uncomfortable period of American race relations which mirrors the struggles it still faces today, making it both shocking and deeply relevant
Sudden violence and a seeping sense of unease are leavened with glimpses of light; Darktown feels like a state of mind as much as a place, fighting for better times to come.
A brilliant blending of crime, mystery, and American history. Terrific entertainment.
A complicated crime fiction that melds an intense plot with fully realized characters