Behold! Out now, steaming fresh, entrails so warm you’d think the words were still alive, you can now find the second Alex Rourke story in the newly-upgraded series. Why not purchase The Darkness Inside: Writer’s Cut at your local e-mporium in the Colonies or dear old Blighty for really very little indeed?

Day Zero

And isn’t it just dandy?

Of the three former Penguins, this was the one that changed the least way back when, probably because its central concept was a solid one. (He said, segueing nicely into a “what’s the book about?” paragraph.)

When the weeks and months roll by after a child is snatched and isn’t found, and especially on the (thankfully) rare occasions when there’s a spate of such crimes where the corpses of some of the victims are discovered, or when a confessed murderer is caught, we naturally assume that all those taken are dead, waiting to be found perhaps long after the event, perhaps never.

But what if you make that assumption and you’re wrong?

(The actual proper jackety blurb can be read at the Amazonian links, of course.)

I was expecting it to be less work than The Touch Of Ghosts since it didn’t need many major changes - there are a couple of scenes deleted wholesale but none of the en masse chopping and carving the last book needed - but it turns out changing the tense and cleaning up the text on a 90,000 word novel takes forever. (Especially when your entire family has stinking colds and you’re in the run up to Christmas. I’m still dreading having missed a few tense changes in all the to-ing and fro-ing.)

The main issue with the original TDI was, in fact, that hardly anyone ever got to read it because of its spectacularly botched release. The core book was always the strongest of the originals. It was also interesting to see how my writing style had changed from TTOG. This one didn’t always get there, but the voice was far closer to what eventually settled into the style I use for the Cregan books: the tendency to drop pronouns and/or verbs from sentences, the chopped descriptions, all very different to how I’d written before. OK, so some of the writing was ropy as hell where it hadn’t quite worked, and I’ve put some of those pronouns and verbs back in, but I was clearly on my way to my grown-up style back then.

So yes, it’s out and about. Go and buy it. That’s four novels released in the space of two months (in addition to one copy-edited for someone else), two of them needing major edits. The third writer’s cut will follow after the holidays.

(Aside: I also note that Amazon UK has tied the new version to the originals for no apparent reason, hence a 2008 review appearing for it. Also note that I did briefly release the original in the US a couple of years ago so you might, for all I know, see two Kindle editions appearing on some lists even though the old one is long-unpublished. Because, y’know, it wasn’t very good.)

Finally, the becoming-traditional cover photo mention: it’s this by the very swish D Sharon Pruitt (why yes, I did recolor it by hand, since you ask), along with a couple of glass textures by jinterwas, all tweaked and amended by yours truly.

Enjoy! Or not!

But please enjoy!